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Recognition ranges – don't lose sight of safety

This time it's really happening: the fire alarm sounds and it's not a drill this time. You need to leave the room as quickly as possible and follow the green escape route signs. Did you know that what matters now is how far away the next sign is from you?

Because a safety sign only keeps you safe when you can reliably recognise it, experts have put a lot of effort into examining this topic and defining so-called recognition ranges. The recognition range is the distance of a safety sign from the observer's eyes. Depending on the size and the graphics used on a sign, this distance may be longer or shorter.


An escape route sign with a height of 150 mm is, for example, only easy to recognise up to a distance of approx. 15 metres. If you want good visibility from 20 metres away, then the sign needs to be 200 mm high. Important: the more complicated the graphics on the safety signs are, the shorter the distance to the observer should be.


We have put together the following table to show you which sign can be reliably recognised from which distance. You can use it when planning your signage concept and you can be safe in the knowledge that you are affixing the right number of signs, and signs that are the right size.


Of course, we'll be happy to provide you with further, personal help when you wish to affix signs in your company in compliance with standards. Simply contact us.

Recognition range in metres Size of letters in millimetres Prohibition and mandatory signs, diameter in millimetres Warning signs, base in millimetres Rescue, fire protection and additional signs, height in millimetres
Recognition ranges Letters Round signs Triangular signs Rectangular signs
0.5 m 2 mm 12.5 mm 25 mm 12.5 mm
1 m 4 mm 25 mm 50 mm 25 mm
2 m 8 mm 50 mm 100 mm 25 mm
3 m 10 mm 100 mm 100 mm 50 mm
4 m 14 mm 100 mm 200 mm 50 mm
5 m 17 mm 200 mm 200 mm 50 mm
6 m 20 mm 200 mm 200 mm 100 mm
7 m 23 mm 200 mm 300 mm 100 mm
8 m 27 mm 200 mm 300 mm 100 mm
9 m 30 mm 300 mm 300 mm 100 mm
10 m 34 mm 300 mm 400 mm 100 mm
11 m 37 mm 300 mm 400 mm 150 mm
12 m 40 mm 300 mm 400 mm 150 mm
13 m 44 mm 400 mm 600 mm 150 mm
14 m 47 mm 400 mm 600 mm 150 mm
15 m 50 mm 400 mm 600 mm 150 mm
16 m 54 mm 400 mm 600 mm 200 mm
17 m 57 mm 600 mm 600 mm 200 mm
18 m 60 mm 600 mm 600 mm 200 mm
19 m 64 mm 600 mm 600 mm 200 mm
20 m 67 mm 600 mm 900 mm 200 mm
21 m 70 mm 600 mm 900 mm 300 mm
22 m 74 mm 600 mm 900 mm 300 mm
23 m 77 mm 600 mm 900 mm 300 mm
24 m 80 mm 600 mm 900 mm 300 mm
25 m 84 mm 900 mm 900 mm 300 mm
26 m 87 mm 900 mm 900 mm 300 mm
27 m 90 mm 900 mm 900 mm 300 mm
28 m 94 mm 900 mm 900 mm 300 mm
29 m 97 mm 900 mm 900 mm 300 mm
30 m 100 mm 900 mm 900 mm 300 mm
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