One of the most overlooked yet essential items in day-to-day life is emergency signs. These signs are present in every establishment and public area. An emergency sign is a physical signboard informing people of possible or potential threats/ dangers in the area. These signs also direct people to safety during an emergency. An emergency sign is an integral part of a contingency plan. All public buildings have a preset contingency plan for potential dangers like a public shootout, fire, or natural calamities. 

A contingency plan has clear-cut roles for all staff and employees. It also has a range of signs that direct people to safety or inform them of necessary practices or strategies to deploy during an emergency. These signs are not recent and have been an engendered practice for millennia. Most public spaces of all ages had some signboard or other making an emergency announcement. An emergency sign has come a long way since then, going digital today.


Digital sign boards allow more flexibility of operation and message. An individual in a control room can manipulate the sign’s contents as and when necessary to help people stuck inside the building or space. Even public transportation contains an emergency sign depicting exits in case of accidents. The digital emergency sign is essentially an LED board displaying a moving string of words, though certain advanced signages also allow for pictures. They are crucial in times of danger, helping people reach safety as quickly as possible. 


An emergency sign is effortlessly incorporated into any space. Each emergency has its own set of symbols and signs.

On The Beach

The beach is a fun place to visit for all ages, but it can pose its dangers. Specific beaches have jellyfish that come on the shore, and people need to be aware of them to minimise any potential risk. Also, the ocean currents might be exceptionally high that day, and an emergency sign can proclaim that, allowing people to keep a safe distance.

Areas Prone to Natural Disasters

Certain cities or towns are more prone to attacks of nature than others, for example, a town near an active volcano. These cities will have specialised centres studying weather patterns, geological shifts, etc., trying to predict a calamity before it happens. In such cases, an emergency sign can help notify people of any imminent danger so that they can get to safety.

Fire Escape

This sign is probably the most common sign that almost everyone is familiar with; these signs usually use symbols for direction. These signs are strategically placed, informing people of the path to take during an emergency. These signs act as a map, directing people to a safe point on the premises.


An emergency sign has to follow specific protocols or conditions, which differentiate it from other regular signage. 


The message should be brief as possible and should majorly be conveyed through symbols. A glance at the sign should contain all necessary information.


The sign should be strategically placed such that people in the building can notice it effortlessly. For example, near lifts or stairs, or over entrances and exits.

Attracting Attention

With the advancements in fluorescence, an emergency sign today comes with a light reflector panel that catches the eyes of all passers-by. These are also visible in the dark while using torches.


Emergency signs must stick to a dual-tone or at the most tri-tone colour palette (usually black, white and red). Having a white background with black symbols and lettering is most effective at disseminating information quickly. Using bold red borders also calls attention towards the sign, helping people in the time of need.

Author Bio: Hannah Gilbert is a freelance writer who offers to ghostwrite, copywriting, and blogging services. She works closely with B2C and B2B businesses providing digital marketing content that gains social media attention and increases their search engine visibility.