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    Safety Tips

    The color of safety

    January 17, 2011

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    Colors are an important way of communicating hazards to workers. The American National Standards Institute has established rules governing what specific colors mean.

    Standardized rules can help people easily recognize and understand the message being conveyed. Some common colors and their meaning include:

    Fire protection equipment
    Danger, high risk of injury or death
    Emergency stops and alarms

    Moderate risk of injury
    Guarding devices

    Caution statements
    Minor risk of injury
    Materials handling equipment

    Safety equipment or information
    First aid equipment or location

    No immediate hazard

    Trucks, rail cards and other containers must have placards attached indicating the hazard level of the container’s contents.

    The meanings of various colors on these placards also are standardized:

    Red – combustible materials
    Yellow – oxidizers
    White – poison or toxic
    Orange – explosives
    Green – nonflammable gas
    Red and white stripe – Flammable solid

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