In many ways flagging, barricade and underground/buried marker tapes are all similar in function.

They are used to identify hazards and mark boundaries where hazards may be present or an area that needs to be temporarily secured.

All of these tapes are non-adhesive type and are generally made from vinyl, polyethylene, or polypropylene plastics that are tough, unaffected by rain/moisture, and hold up well in weathering elements.

However, each of these tapes are designed for specific applications and have different feature options that make them better suited to different conditions within their intended applications.

Read on to find out which to use and where, and what optional features of each you might need.

Flagging Tapes

Flagging tapes are used for flagging boundaries and tying to the tops of survey marking stakes, marking trees or other objects to be removed, or marking objects that need to be made more conspicuous.

However flagging tapes are generally not strong enough to use as a barricade tape tied between cones, stakes, or other boundary perimeter objects.

Flagging tapes are typically 1” to 1.25” wide, 2-3 mil thick, and available in a variety of solid colors, fluorescent colors, and stripes.

Wire flag markers are also commonly used for the same/similar applications as flagging tapes, where the wire ‘post’ is stuck directly into the soil to identify area boundaries or define paths to temporarily mark underground services when digging is to occur near them. These may also have printed messages on the flag portion of the marker.

Barricade Tapes

Barricade tapes are used to mark and zone off area boundaries, prevent accidents, and increase visibility/awareness of hazardous areas.

These tapes are available in solid colors designed to meet the ANSI 1910.144 Safety Color Code for Marking Physical Hazards and are also available in familiar alternating slanted stripe patterns such as black/yellow or red/white, or with repeating standard or custom warning messages for common hazards or security situations.

Barricade tapes are typically available in widths between 2” and 6”, thicknesses from 2-6 mil depending upon strength requirements, and may be tied, stapled, or nailed in place.

Specialty barricade tapes are also available having reinforcing cotton, nylon, or polyester threads embedded within the plastic tape material for applications requiring higher strength or longer-lasting durability.     

Underground/Buried Tapes

Underground tapes are used to warn excavating crews of buried services before they dig into them and damage or injury occurs.

These tapes are installed in trenches directly above buried pipes, cables, and gas lines before final back fill; and at a uniform depth below grade, or at a uniform safe-warning depth above the actual buried service.

The plastic materials used for these tapes are impervious to alkaline, acid, or other soil conditions which may be encountered.

Like barricade tapes, these tapes are available in different colors, thicknesses, widths, and/or with stock or custom repeating word messages.  

Detectable underground tapes are also available for detection by inductive location using specialized non-ferrous metal locating equipment, or where there is the ability to clip to either end of the foil with conductive equipment. These tapes typically utilize an aluminum foil core laminated between two layers of plastic tape.

The Electromark Advantage

Electromark offers all of the tapes and options detailed here, and more!

Let our sales team help you with the options we have available, and the decision between which will best suit your applications.

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