What fire alarm signs do I need for my building?
The specific fire alarm signs you need for your building in the UK will depend on the type of building you have and the level of fire risk. However, there are some general requirements that apply to all buildings.
- Fire Alarm Call Point Signs: These signs are mandatory if you have a fire alarm. They should be displayed next to each fire alarm call point. They should be easy to see in the event of a fire, even in low-light conditions.
- Fire Action Notice: This sign is mandatory for all premises. It should be displayed next to every fire alarm call point and at every final exit door. It provides instructions on what to do in the event of a fire.
- Fire Exit Signs: These signs are needed for all but the smallest and simplest of properties. They should be displayed above all exit doors and along escape routes. They should be easy to see in the event of a fire, even in low light conditions.
- Fire Extinguisher ID Sign: This sign is needed if you have fire extinguishers on your premises. It should be displayed above each fire extinguisher. It should identify the type of fire extinguisher and the types of fires it can be used on.
- Other Fire Equipment Signs: If you have a dry riser or a hose reel in your building, you will need to signpost them. There are also a variety of warning and prohibition signs that may be needed, depending on the fire risk of your premises.
In addition to the general requirements, there are also specific fire alarm signs that may be needed for certain types of buildings. For example, schools and hospitals may need to display signs that indicate the location of fire assembly points.
It is important to ensure that all fire alarm signs are compliant with British Standards (BS 5499). This will help to ensure that they are effective in communicating the necessary information in the event of a fire.
You can find more information about fire alarm signs on the website of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
The symbols used for fire alarm signs in the UK are standardized to ensure clear and consistent communication of fire safety information. These symbols are based on the British Standard BS 5499-1:2011, which specifies the design and use of safety signs.
Here are some of the most common fire alarm symbols used in the UK:
Escape route location signs
- A stylized figure of a person running, indicating the direction of the escape route.
Emergency exit and emergency door release signs
- A stylized representation of an open door with a diagonal arrow pointing towards the exit.
Safe condition signs
- A green tick symbol, indicating that the area is safe to enter or use.
- A blue circle with a diagonal slash through it, indicating that a specific action is required.
Fire action signs
- A stylized flame symbol, indicating a fire safety instruction or procedure.
Fire alarm call point signs
- A stylized bell symbol, indicating the location of a fire alarm activation point.
Fire extinguisher identification signs
- A stylized representation of a fire extinguisher, accompanied by symbols or text indicating the types of fires it can be used on.
- A red circle with a diagonal slash through it, indicating that a specific action is prohibited.
These fire safety symbols are designed to be easily recognizable and understood, even in low-light or emergency situations, ensuring effective communication of fire safety information in the UK.