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Are you planning on travelling this summer break? Thinking of heading to a non-English speaking country? You’ve learnt the basic words of the destinations language; “yes”, “no”, “toilet”, “food”. But have you thought about learning “help”, “first aid”, “defibrillator”, “exit”, or “hospital”? Be First Aid prepared and educate you and your loved ones on how to ask for help in an emergency or accidental situation. Australia Wide First Aid also encourage you to keep an eye out for the Universal First Aid signs, as displayed below:



An Exit Sign is a device in a public facility representing the location of the closet emergency exit in case of fire or other emergency. This sign is meant to be absolutely unmistakeable and understandable to anyone. In most regions, including European Union, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea and China, exit signs have green lighting. In this colour scheme, red is used to show prohibited activities. In Canada and United Signs, Exit Signs have green or red lighting, usually red.






In Greek Mythology, the Rod of Asclepius is a serpent-entwined rod wielded by the Greek God Asclepius, a deity associated with healing and medicine. The symbol has continued to be used in modern times, where it is associated with medicine and health care. A number of organisations and services around the world use the rod of Asclepius as their logo, or part of their logo. These include:

  • Emergency Medical Services in the United Kingdom
  • Academy of Medicine of Malaysia
  • American Medical Association
  • Army Medical Department of the U.S. Army
  • Australian Medical Association
  • World Health Organisation
  • Medical Council of India
  • Star of Life, Symbol of Emergency Services
  • and so on…




Hospital signs are normally located on the side of the road, occupying their own blue coloured sign. The sign pictured above can also be seen placed on large directional street signs, including motorway exits.









The internationally accepted symbol for first aid is the white cross on a green background, as shown below. When you locate this sign, you should be able to find people, tools or a facility who will be able to provide first aid to a person suffering sudden illness or serious injury. This will allow you to provide care to preserve life, prevent the condition from worsening, and/or promote recovery. Australia Wide First Aid encourages, not one, but two people you are travelling with to be trained in first aid. This will allow you to have peace of mind when travelling, knowing you and one other person can apply first aid skills and knowledge to a fellow travelling, again, preserving life, preventing the condition from worsening, and/or promoting recovery.





In September 2008, the International Liaison Committee of Resuscitation issued a ‘universal AED sign’ to be adopted throughout the world. This indicates the presence of an Automated External Defibrillator. Defibrillators are also highly visible and public access defibrillator are often brightly coloured. This is to help them stand out in a time of emergency. Click here to find out the most common place for a defibrillator to be found.







A fire extinguisher or extinguisher is an active fire protection device used to extinguish or control small fires, often in an emergency situations. It is not intended to be used for an out-of-control fire, such as one which flames have reached the ceiling. A fire extinguisher sign is small and designed to be mounted near a fire extinguisher in order to draw attention to the extinguishers location.

Would you like to learn first aid?

Australia Wide First Aid courses in 18 convenient locations around Australia. Our venue locations include:

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This post was written by awfa

1 Comment

  • Bansi says:

    Signs are not same in every country or sometimes in same state. Different organisations or individuals prefer different signs because of language limitations or variations. Its always better to have universal signs which can be understood by anyone. For example, red plus sign is for medical. Thanks for such images, it will help me recognize these places whenever I will travelling.