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Hazard Tape Buyer’s Guide

What are safety tapes? What is hazard tape used for?

Hazard tape, or safety tape, is used in many different industries to mark floors, walls or other areas. Sometimes it’s not obvious which is the correct type to use. 

We’ll explain everything you’ll need to know in this hazard tape buyer’s guide. 

What is hazard tape?

Hazard tape, also known as safety tape, is a vibrantly-coloured or patterned adhesive tape. It can either be adhesive, for sticking to floors or walls, or it can be non-adhesive, for using to cordon off areas. 

It’s flexible, durable and has good resistance to water and abrasion. 

What is hazard tape used for?

Hazard tape is used for highlighting potential hazards, indoors and outdoors. It helps to prevent accidents like trips and falls, and can be used to stop people venturing into restricted areas. 

It’s used in many industries, including on construction sites, by emergency services, in offices, commercial buildings, to mark traffic routes and more.

What colour is hazard tape?

Hazard tape is usually yellow and black, but can also be red and white, or green and white. The UK’s Health and Safety Regulations 1996 dictate which colour should be used for which purpose:

Colour

Meaning or purpose

Instructions and information

Red

  • Prohibition sign

  • Danger alarm

  • Fire-fighting equipment

  • Dangerous behaviour

  • Stop, shutdown, emergency cut out devices, Evacuate

  • Identification and location

Yellow or amber

Warning sign

  • Be careful, take precautions

  • Examine

Blue

Mandatory sign

  • Specific behaviour or action

  • Wear personal protective equipment

Green

  • Emergency escape, first aid sign

  • No danger

  • Doors, exits, routes, equipment, facilities

  • Return to normal

 

Why is hazard tape yellow and black?

Yellow and black is used on hazard tape because it provides contrast against most backgrounds, so the tape can be seen easily. 

What are the different types of hazard tape?

Hazard tape can either be adhesive or non-adhesive. Sticky hazard tape is made of a PVC film coated with rubber pressure-sensitive adhesive. This is used for marking areas on floors, walls or overhead. 

Non-adhesive hazard tape is manufactured using polyethylene and is flexible. It is most commonly used to create barriers, to warn people and stop them walking into an area.

You can also find anti-slip hazard tape which is specifically designed for use on floors.

The table below shows the types of hazard tape we sell, their features, technical information and available sizes. 

Type of hazard warning tape

Features

Technical information

Available sizes

Non-adhesive warning barrier tape (black/yellow and red/white)

  • Highly visible, water resistant barrier tape

  • Ideal for marking out or cordoning off areas

  • Extra-long for extended use

  • Total thickness: 20mic (±1)

  • Elongation: 240%

  • Tensile strength: 6 N/cm

  • Temperature rating: 0°C to +60°C

72mm (3") width x 500m length

Adhesive hazard warning floor tape (black/yellow, red/white

  • UV and moisture resistant adhesive ensures a strong, durable seal that withstands high footfall and machinery traffic.

  • Adheres quickly so it can be walked on immediately after application.

  • Suitable for indoor and outdoor use

  • Material: PVC film coated with rubber pressure sensitive adhesive

  • Total thickness: 0.15mm (±0.01)

  • Elongation: 150%

  • Tensile strength: 15 N/cm

  • Adhesive to steel: ≥ 1 N/cm

  • Roll back tack: > 10 (ball no.)

  • Voltage resistance: ≥ 3 kV

  • Temperature rating: -15°C to +80°C

50mm (2") width x 33m length - 0.15mm thick

Anti-slip adhesive & abrasive hazard marking tape

  • Ideal for marking floors or highlighting warning areas

  • Abrasive surface

  • Self-adhesive and slip resistant

  • The abrasive coating of this tape provides excellent grip and friction

  • Material: PVC film with diamond sand compound and natural rubber based adhesive

50mm (2") width x 5m length - 0.55mm thick

Non-adhesive caution electric tape

  • Non-adhesive

  • Ideal for use with buried cables

  • Printed with 'Caution Electric Cable Below' making it suitable for use as underground marking tape.

  • Material: Polyethylene (PE) film

  • Size: 150mm x 365m - 0.15mm thick

  • Total thickness 50mic (±10)

  • Elongation 240%

  • Tensile strength ≥ 6 N/cm

  • Temperature rating 0°C to +60°C

150mm width x 365m length - 0.15mm thick

How do you use hazard tape?

It depends on the type of hazard you need to warn people about. 

  1. First, decide which colour and type of tape is needed; adhesive, barrier tape, or anti-abrasion tape

  2. Unreel enough tape to clearly highlight the hazard from every angle that it could be accessed (e.g. if it’s a raised step, add a strip of tape along the length of the nosing)

  3. Only remove the tape when the hazard has been removed

According to UK health and safety law:

  • Black and yellow tape should be used where there is a risk of colliding with obstacles, or falling objects. 

  • Red and white stripes should be used in built-up zones where workers have access during their work day (e.g. on construction sites)

  • The size of the marking must be proportionate to the size of the hazard in question 

  • The stripes on the tape must be at an angle of approximately 45°

How do you apply caution tape to a door?

Use adhesive tape and apply enough tape across the door and doorframe to make it clear there is a hazard, and to restrict people from opening the door if necessary. 

How to remove hazard tape residue

You can use our professional grade Label Remover spray to safely and quickly remove any leftover residue from hazard tape. Use the long straw attachment to spray the area and the residue should easily come away from the surface.

You can also use rubbing alcohol (isopropyl alcohol) to remove adhesive. Start by removing as much residue as possible with a knife or another scraping tool, then apply the alcohol using a soft cloth and gently rub the affected area until the adhesive comes off. 

Where to buy hazard tape

We sell a range of low cost hazard tape here at GTSE. You can save when you buy in bulk by taking advantage of our multipack offers. 

If you have any more questions about hazard tape, or any other cable management products, please contact us via live chat, email or phone.