ISO 22324 Societal security - Emergency management - Guidelines for colour coded alert

This International Standard provides guidelines for the use of colour codes to inform people at risk as well as first response personnel about danger and to express the severity of a situation. It is applicable to all types of hazard in any location.

People may be faced in their daily lives with various kinds of risks. People at risk should be able to take appropriate safety actions when faced with hazards even though they may not have a full understanding of them. Public warnings, through a combination of prior notifications and alerts, enable people at risk to take appropriate and timely actions to protect their safety.

Haruo

Haruo Hayashi (Japan), the project leader responsible for writing ISO 22324, explains:

"Colour coded alerts are used to notify people at risk of status changes on a safety or danger continuum in allowing them to take appropriate actions. This International Standard will lead to better understanding of colour-coded alerts by reducing the confusion and prompting more appropriate responses in an emergency situation." 

ISO 22324 describes various colours and how they should be used, for example:

  • RED is associated with danger and should be used to notify people at risk to take appropriate safety actions immediately.
  • YELLOW is associated with caution and should be used to notify people at risk to prepare to take appropriate safety actions
  • GREEN is associated with a safe status and should be used to notify people at risk that no action is required.

ISO 22324:2015 Societal security — Emergency management — Guidelines for colour coded alerts, is available from ISO national member institutes. It may also be obtained directly from the ISO Central Secretariat, respectively through the ISO Store or by contacting the Marketing, Communication & Information department.

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