Painting and Decorating Made Easier!

Government codes are precise about which, and how, certain public, restricted and private areas must be marked on a property. This is for the safety of the public – and employees.

Specific signage and symbols must be placed at precise spots – in relation to borders, obstacles, pipes, operating equipment, etc. Stripes and lines must meet width and length specifications. Any lettering must be the specified font style, size and color. All markings must be painted with specification paint products, in code colors. The paint must be applied to the required thickness.

Often, the painting and maintaining of these areas rests with the facility’s staff painter. On large properties, the work is handled usually by commercial or industrial painting contractors. In large communities, you will find painting contractors that specialize in compliance painting. (It can be a very lucrative business.)

Here’s part of the “compliance checklist” that I developed to make certain I kept on top of these painting projects. The goal: Help keep the property, and business, in government compliance.

1. Handicapped parking space

A. Blue and White wheelchair symbol. Place within the middle of parking stall space.

B. Blue parking stall lines – left and right sides of stall space.

2. No parking zone

A. Emergency Services area: Red stripes – Diagonal parallel – Emergency Services area.

B. Public Warning area: Safety Yellow stripes – Diagonal parallel.

3. Loading/Unloading

A. SAFETY YELLOW and Red stripes – Combo – or

B. Individual – perpendicular parallel striping.

4. Pedestrian crossing

A. White – diagonal striping.

B. With/without SAFETY YELLOW stripe border.

5. Parking bumper pad

A. SAFETY YELLOW or Black – Solid – Corresponding diagonal stripes.


6. Emergency vehicles only

A. SAFETY RED – Diagonal striping and lettering. Typical color.

7. Oversized vehicles

A. SAFETY YELLOW – Straight or diagonal striping.

8. Compact vehicles – Found usually in parking garages

A. White or SAFETY YELLOW – Diagonal stripes – Border.

B. Reduced stall width – Restricts use of large vehicle.

9. Bike path

A. White border/line – Single line – Complete length of path.

B. Street crossings: White and SAFETY YELLOW – Diagonal lines. Red may be required.

10. Recreation court

A. Dependent on recreation form – eg. tennis, basketball, volleyball.

B. Examples: Tennis courts: WHITE-all lines; RED or GREEN-specific zones: eg. Serving box.

C. Follow standards for your application.

D. Keep gallons of CHALK white, BRIGHT RED, and green in shop.


A. Electrical conduit and piping systems. Check their standardized color coding systems.

B. Examples: Gas lines: Black. Water lines: SAFETY BLUE.

C. “DANGER” – SAFETY RED lettering – in all cases.

12. Pool area

A. No striping or color coding required.

B. Inside pools: Depth markings required. Typical color: BLACK.

C. Bottom stripes optional. Typical color(s): BLACK

13. Parking stall markers

A. WHITE lines – Regular parking; BLUE lines – Handicapped.

B. Parallel side markers: Safety Yellow. May need to be specific to asphalt type of coating.

C. Space size: 18 feet from curb to bumper or bumper pad; width: 9 feet; 11-11 ½ feet apart.

TIP 1: Create a chart for this checklist. Painter-to-property specific works best. Here’s your chance to get creative with that EXCEL program. My chart includes the following:

(1) list of areas, and requirements for each area;

(2) scheduled “DO-IT” week for each project, and how often it needs to be done;

(3) check mark ü symbol, if supervisor/management “go-ahead” is needed;

(4) paint product manufacturers, specification color numbers and names, drying times, quantity needed of each color, each time;

(5) available can sizes, approximate cost for each can of paint/coating/finish;

(6) list of supplies: paint thinner, plumb-line, masking tape, paper, etc.

(7) scaled down full-color icons of symbols, signs, stripes, lines, etc.

TIP 2: Once a year, or more often: Do a clipboard/notebook/App-board walk-around the property, with your supervisor/manager. Take your checklist along. Take notes. If done on your hand-held device, regularly click “SAVE.”

TIP 3: Access a copy of the standards and code compliance book for your property. Make two full-color copies of the section that applies to property code markings. Put each copy in a separate binder. Label each cover. Make one copy accessible to anyone that works in  engineering/facilities. Keep the second copy in your paint shop, in a secure place.


Which markings wear off or fade the fastest on your hotel/facility property?

Which painting-related warning signs and tapes work best on your property?

Which area(s) need, but lack, safety markings on your hotel/facility property?

Which area(s) need, but lack, signage on your property?

Examples: “Cross-Traffic,” “Staff Parking,” “Permit Parking Only,” “Hours of Use,” “CAUTION.”

* * * * * * * * * * *

Be property safe! Help your property be compliant! Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”


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