Hazardous Materials Signage

Signage is one of the easiest ways to communicate which hazards are present in a given area, and partially fulfils an employee's right to know. Lakehead has initiated a program to standardize hazardous material signage on Campus to make it easier for employees, visitors, and emergency personnel to be aware of hazards prior to entering any spaces containing hazardous materials on campus.

Three types of signage are currently being used on campus:

Hazardous Materials Signs - What is on the Sign?

  • Hazmat coding system (coloured diamond)– this system utilizes colours and numbers to alert external emergency personnel of the presence and severity of any hazardous materials contained in an area.
  • WHMIS symbols– these symbols will depict the categories for the hazardous materials contained in an area, and should be familiar to members of the University community.
  • Contact information– This will give information on how to contact those that need to be notified in case of an emergency in this area.
  • Instructions for our housekeeping staff.

Example of a typical Hazmat Sign located on Lakehead Campuses


How To Order Your Sign

Fill out the information form located here, providing as much information as possible and return it to the Human Resources Office. We will send you your completed sign to be mounted on all doors outside of the area containing hazardous materials.

Unsure How to Find the Information Needed?
Check your MSDS sheets – they will provide you information on the hazard classes and the NFPA fire rating. Report the largest NFPA rating numbers for each category of hazardous materials found in your area.
Contact Human Resources for assistance, if you need it, extension 8806.


Communication between area occupants and our housekeeping staff is vital to prevent their exposure to hazardous materials. As our housekeepers work after regular business hours, they may not be able to ask questions about the hazards contained in each area. It is therefore important to leave clear instructions regarding which tasks are safe to do and which are not. This information should be displayed on all laboratory outer door signage.

Workplace Labels

WHMIS legislation requires hazardous materials to be labelled when transferred into worksite containers. These labels must include:

  • Name of the Product
  • Safe Handling Instructions
  • Reference to MSDS

To request Workplace labels, contact the Office of Human Resources - Health and Safety