If your place of work is already open or is looking to reopen, your first priority is to keep both staff and customers safe.
With the 2m distancing rule uniformly being seen as an effective way of helping stop the spread of coronavirus, social distancing stickers and floor markings are the practical solution to keeping people flowing safely through your workplace.
There are different ways to create effective social distancing floor stickers and markings.
The lowest cost option is by using a warning tape or similar. Usually at 48 or 75mm wide, these tapes are normally used for packaging but are sticky enough to be securely adhered to the floor.
The tapes are low cost and readily available but they are not designed for floor use, not anti-slip, and their flooring durability and longevity is unknown.
For very short term use, they’ll help create zones and 2m markings but after you’ve worked out where you need people to go to keep them safe, you’ll need to look at better options.
There are various options for social distancing floor stickers depending on where they are to be used and what purpose they need to fulfill.
Short term / low foot traffic
Most standard self-adhesive vinyls will stay in place for three months or more when used on an even floor. Monomeric vinyls are the most cost effective option and coupled with a monomeric flooring overlaminate, they can be easily placed down and used for social distance markings.
Monomeric refers to the make-up of the vinyl and defines it’s durability and usefulness. Most monomerics will have a lifespan of at least three months on the floor and are recommended for lower traffic areas.
Longer term / high foot traffic
If the area is expected to have a higher footfall, a polymeric vinyl is advised. Polymerics are more durable plus being conformable they will adhere within flooring tile gaps etc.
Bear in mind though, that the customer or employee is not walking on the vinyl itself – the vinyl is stuck to the floor. Feet walk on the flooring overlaminate which is placed over the top of the vinyl protecting it and creating the anti-slip surface.
It’s this overlaminate that has the texture and anti-slip rating. For commercial use, any flooring product needs to have at least an R11 rating.
Some overlaminates also have anti-bacterial properties.
Although their effectiveness is not known against the virus, as part of a thorough cleaning regime, these properties must help with keeping surfaces clean.
Easy apply graphics
Floor graphics can also be constructed as one or two part systems – again, this is down to expected footfall volume plus the duration it needs to be in place.
Two part systems are as described above. The print is on the vinyl and it’s protected by the overlaminate. As long as its a matched system – monomeric to monomeric or polymeric to polymeric – they are the most durable options where clarity of the message is paramount.
One part systems will have similar R ratings for anti-slip and with a self adhesive backing, they are applied in the same way.
The only difference is that the image is printed directly onto the face of the film so it possibly may not have the durability of a two-part product.
However most manufacturers will give them similar guarantees of lifespan as a comparable two part system and with them being usually more cost effective, they are certainly worth looking at for social distancing floor stickers.
Different adhesives can also make the installation simpler.
Manufacturers apply removable or permanent glues depending on the final application and most two part systems will have the choice of either depending on low-high traffic and use.
Some products also have air-release adhesive technology. This allows any trapped air to be squeezed out when laying the vinyl to the floor and stops any bubbles forming beneath the product.
More importantly it means that staff can fit the graphics instead of having to find an installer to complete the social distancing markings.
Carpet vinyl floor stickers
The above floor graphic options are primarily for use on tiled or smooth floors. For carpeted areas, it’s the same principle but using a specialised carpet vinyl. The adhesive on the back of these products is designed to hold onto the weave of the carpet and stay in place when repeatedly walked on.
A standard vinyl, even with permanent adhesive, will not grip a carpet for any effective length of time. They will start to lift at the corners and come away as they can’t grab onto enough of the fabric to remain in-situ.
Printed floor mats and floor coverings
Entrance floor mats can direct customers effectively at their first point of contact with your premises. With a strong message, they can create the right mindset to help people realise how the store now operates and to keep everyone safe.
Floor coverings can be individually printed to create a total floor layout including directional information.
Social distancing wall graphics
Signage remains the same as pre Covid-19 from the substrates used – foam PVC, Correx, DiBond – to how they are fixed and maintained.
If graphics need to be applied to brickwork either internally or outside, special self-adhesive vinyls are available that conform into the bricks’ uneven surface and stays in place where a standard vinyl would lift and come away.
For information on how we can adapt social distancing floor graphics to suit museums and leisure facilities as they reopen, we have a posts on hospital safety signage (https://qpsprint.co.uk/hospital-signs-and-wayfinding-solutions/ ) and museum way marking solutions. ( https://qpsprint.co.uk/innovative-museum-signage-wayfinding/ )
First and foremost, it is the message on the social distancing floor stickers and markings that is crucially important.
Staff and customers must be kept safe in the premises with simple, easy to understand design being used to get the required message across.
We can help to enforce this message using the correct level of impact along with finding the right products to ensure your social distance markings work both effectively and cost efficiently.
Get in touch with our exhibition ideas team on 01782 413789 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Working alongside you, we’ll find the best way to inject a bit more impact into your next stand and show.