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Top 5 Industries That Benefit From Active Warning Signage

Top 5 Industries That Benefit From Active Warning Signage

At ZoneSafe, we have been making workplaces safe for more than 20 years.

We work with customers to fully understand their challenges and apply the most suitable system.

The ZoneSafe suite of products is easy to use, flexible, and highly adaptable to a wide range of complex challenges and worksites, and the ZoneSafe sensor-activated warning signage offers businesses an effective way to address the risk of pedestrian/vehicle collision risk.

What Is Active Warning Signage?

ZoneSafe active warning offers an alternative to traditional safety signage and helps to counteract sign clutter and blindness. The visual warning display automatically becomes active when a hazard appears close by.

This is particularly helpful in areas with a lot of activity, blind spots, and where people and vehicles work in close proximity. 

The system is easily applied to a wide range of high-risk sectors. It is often an excellent alternative to the ZoneSafe proximity warning system when tagging workers isn’t always possible. 

 

ZoneSafe Active Signage Range:

Activated Warning Signs – alerts pedestrians to approaching vehicles through LED flashing lights in sequence at the top and bottom of the sign.

Caution Sign

Activated Warning Lights – warning beacons flash when vehicles approach (or when pedestrian access gates automatically lock), alerting pedestrians to approaching vehicles.

zonesafe-active-sign-flashing-beacon-close-up-image

Traffic Lights – help to control workplace vehicle traffic/speed and warn pedestrians of oncoming traffic.

zonesafe-active-warning-traffic-lights

Projected Warning Symbols – warning signs are projected onto the floor as vehicles approach. An ideal solution for blind corners and ends of racking.

zonesafe-active-lights-floor-warning-sign-projection

 

How Does It Work?

Active signs stand by until activated by an approaching vehicle. A sensor mounted onto vehicles and hazards communicates with the sign on approach, automatically initiating an alert through highly visual flashing lights and beacons. The activation distance is adjustable to meet specific challenges and site requirements.

Signage is only active when the hazard is present and is automatically deactivated once the hazard is removed. By delivering a highly visual alert at the critical moment, before a collision occurs, eyes are immediately drawn to the warning and awareness is automatically raised.

Features of activated signage include:

  • Automatic real-time activation
  • Highly visual warning
  • Eliminates Sign Blindness
  • Warnings are delivered at the right moment, helping avoid a collision.
  • Proactive approach to accident prevention

 

Which Sectors Most Benefit From Active Signage?

Active signage is highly flexible and can be applied to many different worksites and sectors. The ZoneSafe team work consultatively with customers to deliver solutions that meet specific safety concerns without taking a one-size-fits-all approach. Many of our customers apply active warning signage to reduce pedestrian/vehicle collisions in locations that aren’t access-controlled and when tagging people is unavailable. Other customers combine active signage with other ZoneSafe products to create a complete workplace safety solution.

Below, we have outlined the top 5 industries we work with that can benefit from ZoneSafe’s innovative sensor-activated warning signage.

Boatyards, Ports and Marinas

Boatyards, ports, and marinas are busy throughout the day and night, with heavy equipment, cranes, forklifts, and other vehicles in common use, often in adverse weather conditions or with limited visibility. 

In 2018, a 40-year-old man was killed by a forklift truck while loading a ship at a marina.

Even though workers are familiar with the risks, accidents still happen in a split second, and the presence of members of the public who have little understanding of hazards adds an extra layer of concern.

Members of the public are regular visitors, and access control is often necessary for them to be easily monitored. Active signage lends itself well to this scenario as it automatically illuminates as vehicles approach, providing a highly visual warning to gain pedestrians’ attention. Groups of passengers can be protected by visual alerts and active warning-enabled traffic lights that control or stop traffic flow.

 

Recycling and Waste Centres

2022/23 waste and recycling figures published by HSE recently revealed 1,616 reported non-fatal injuries in the sector, up from 1,555 the previous year. Fatal accident figures showed six fatal accidents, the highest number since 2017/18 and reversing four previous years of declining numbers.   

These figures are not just shocking but show a worrying increase in both fatal and non-fatal accidents at work in the sector. In 2021, the HSE released a safety bulletin following nine fatal vehicle/pedestrian collisions over four years involving loading shovels, six of which were in the waste and recycling sector.

Zonesafe proximity warning systems are highly effective in addressing safety issues at waste and recycling centres, and active signage is easily applied independently or in conjunction with proximity warning systems. 

 

Warehouses

Warehouses rely on workplace transport to reach and move loads, with forklifts and other manual handling equipment commonly used alongside pedestrian workers, creating the potential for collisions and serious accidents. Restricted space, high stacking, and limited visibility add to this issue.

The three most common causes of fatal accidents across all sectors are continually reported to be falls from height, being struck by a moving object and being struck by a moving vehicle. Sadly, these are all regular events within the warehouse. 37% of fatal accidents reported in 2023 were due to being hit by a moving vehicle, making it the most common cause of fatal accidents in the UK transportation and storage sector.

Anti-collision technology helps to transform warehouse safety by alerting vehicle operators and pedestrians to hazards. Activated signage effectively addresses common problems like blind corners and visibility issues through automatic floor projections and sensor-activated beacons.

 

Manufacturing 

Last year, ZoneSafe obtained HSE data via a Freedom of Information request (FOI), which provided detailed insight into the health and safety conditions in UK manufacturing. The data showed 22 fatal manufacturing industry accidents reported in 2021/22 and 95 fatal accidents during the five years 2017-2022, 10 of which were due to being hit by a moving vehicle. The five-year average fatal injury rate for manufacturing is 0.68 per 100,000 workers, which is around 1.7 times the industry rate.

There were also more than 56,000 non-fatal injuries reported during the same period, with 1282 resulting from being hit by a moving vehicle. It’s clear from these numbers that vehicles pose a genuine threat to workers within manufacturing. Although fatal and non-fatal injury rates are lower than in many other industrial sectors, more still needs to be done.

Activated signage provides an easy-to-apply anti-collision system that is highly adaptable to the manufacturing environment and can help raise awareness around blind corners and address issues around visibility restriction, reversing, and crossings. 

 

Agriculture

Agriculture, forestry and fishing hold the unenviable title of the most dangerous sector to work in in the UK. As an industry, it has the worst rate of fatal injury to workers of all main industry sectors, with an annual average of around 21 times the average all-industry rate.

2022/23 figures reveal 21 workers lost their lives at work. A further six members of the public were also killed, including, tragically, a young child.

There were a further 690 non-fatal injuries to employees reported by employers under RIDDOR in 2022/23 – 4% of which were due to being hit by a moving vehicle. In fact, during the five years 2018/29-2022/23, being struck by a moving vehicle was recorded as the most common cause of death in the sector.

Tractors, harvesters, and balers are extremely heavy, often with huge loads and sharp attachments that easily obstruct the view. Farms and agriculture businesses must take a range of precautions around vehicle movement. Activated signage can help here – raising awareness for both drivers and pedestrians.

 

Conclusion

The ZoneSafe active signage range offers an easy-to-apply safety system to a wide range of industries, providing high-risk businesses with a highly adaptable and effective way to prevent accidents in the workplace. A proactive preventative approach is the best way to protect people and avoid workplace accidents – talk to ZoneSafe to learn more.

 

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