Floor marking caution tape can be an effective communication tool to bring attention to hazards and promote safety throughout industrial facility warehouses and work floors. While physical barriers and signage are required to mitigate risk, caution floor tape adds another layer of safety.
Floor marking tape is different from barricade or barrier tape used to cordon an area, but floor tape provides a similar purpose: To identify spaces or areas where caution is necessary, or to designate specific zones that only authorized staff should enter. Our Superior Mark® Floor Marking Tape is an ideal choice for installing caution messages throughout an industrial facility because it’s easy to apply and withstands foot traffic, forklifts, cleaning machines, and chemicals—your safety messages stay in place through it all.
How to Use Caution Floor Tape
Floor marking tape can be used in combination with signage to promote safety and bring attention to hazards on the facility floor. With custom floor tape options, you can create a visual safety plan that works for your facility’s individual needs
While each location requires an individual solution to ensure safety, including floor markings with the required signage and other visual cues is one way to ensure hazards are highlighted and workflows are apparent. Clear floor markings can help visitors and new staff avoid hazards and can help prevent staff from becoming lax in safety protocols.
Common uses for caution tape include:
- Bringing attention to trip hazards
- Labeling forklift crossing areas
- Posting hearing protection requirements
- As part of 5S Lean Methodology
- Reminders for safety and requirements around electric panels
- Providing sufficient space near moving parts
- Designating machinery or vehicle lanes
- Communicating machinery hazards
- Indicating Authorized Staff Only areas
- Highlighting edges and surfaces at loading docks
What Color Should Caution Tape Be?
OSHA mandates caution signs to protect workers against workplace dangers and to prevent unsafe practices in the workplace (1910.145(c)(2)(i) – Caution signs shall be used only to warn against potential hazards or to caution against unsafe practices). While required signage brings attention to safety concerns, floor tape can add another layer of protection. When it comes to colors for visual communication, facilities can implement standardized color cues based on ANSI and OSHA guidelines, which include using yellow, orange, and red in safety messages and warnings.
Follow the recommendations for color when using caution floor tape to ensure your visual communication methods work together. Under OSHA guidelines:
- Yellow is reserved for caution and warnings of mild to moderate hazards to safety or health.
- Red is meant to signify immediate dangers including flammable liquids, as well as to convey fire protection equipment or emergency stop bars, buttons, and switches.
- Orange is used for safety messages and is used on warning signs to highlight high risk.
Visual workplaces are safer and more efficient because they quickly and clearly communicate workflows, traveled lanes, special notices, and hazards. Lines, arrows, and other floor markings direct traffic flow and boost safety. Because there are few requirements for floor tape colors, a designated color scheme is necessary.
To distinguish caution notices from border and walkway tape throughout the facility, caution tape often includes a yellow background with white or black stripes, while tape signifying danger or fire hazards would display bold red and white stripes. Other common color schemes include blue and white for important notices, and green and white for first aid access.
How to Use Text in Caution Notices
In addition to pairing colors to highlight hazards, text communicates specific details to ensure you’ve given workers and visitors sufficient notice. Provide more information when you include a graphic or text such as ‘Do Not Enter,’ ‘Keep Out,’ or ‘PPE Required,’ or include noise level warnings, draw attention to trip hazards, or communicate specific details to help convey the type of danger.
Danger Versus Warning Versus Caution Risk
ANSI and OSHA labeling requirements include three main types of hazard: Danger, Warning, and Caution. Each carries a different type or severity of risk. In general:
- Caution is used where there’s a risk of mild to moderate injury without taking precautions.
- Warning means serious injury or death could occur without proper safety precautions.
- Danger signifies that serious injury or death will occur if safety precautions are ignored.
Text such as “Caution: Watch Your Step,” or “Caution: Low Clearance” helps keep employees safe by bringing attention to trip or impact hazards, while “Danger: Risk of Severe Injury” offers clear communication of what risk is involved.
Why Use Caution Tape Instead of Paint?
Our Superior Mark® Floor Marking Tape applies quickly and easily, remains in place through heavy daily traffic, and removes without leaving residue behind, making it a better option than paint. Additionally, standard or custom-printed text and graphics provide extra information that may be difficult to paint or touch up. It’s clearer, provides more information, lasts longer, and is easier to repair.
Paint won’t work for caution notices on carpeted floors. Our Superior Mark™ Carpet Tape is designed to stick on low-pile carpet, and it removes without damage. Carpet tape allows you to use the same visual tools throughout the facility, no matter the type of floor.
Clear visual communication improves safety and boosts performance in warehouses and industrial facilities. Contact a floor marking Specialist at 1-866-284-1541 to find safety floor tape solutions for your facility or explore our Resource Center for additional tips and tricks.