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Korean safety flag (South Korea)

Last modified: 2021-08-24 by christopher oehler
Keywords: south korea | safety |
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[Korean safety flag] image by Jens Pattke, 25 May 2017

See also:


image located by Esteban Rivera, 10 April 2016

Today I located this picture (source) which shows on the left the flag of KEPCO (a Korean government electricity company), but on the right, I cannot identify the other flag (it is a green horizontal flag with a yellow "O" and below some inscription in Korean).
The picture was taken in Kaesong, in Pyeonghwa (P'yonghwa-ri: Choson'gul) (literally "peace") (source: Peace Village - North_Korea) subdistrict/village.
Other websites featuring the same image are: Image #1 (source); Image #2 (source); Image #3 (source); and Image #4 (source).
If anybody has further information I'd really appreciate it.
Esteban Rivera, 10 April 2016

Even though I am not speaking Korean, I have been able to partially translate the Korean characters on this flag. The first one (the flag is viewed from the back) is obscured by the bent flag, but the second is "jae" and that third is "hae", or, more appropriately: 재 and 해, respectively. Exactly what they mean, I still do not know. Since the Korean characters are syllabic, they may mean many things (I guess).
Using Korean Wikipedia, I found both characters on the "industrial disaster" page and the imagery using Google pictures with those two characters is quite overwhelming.
I think it thus may mean something along the lines of "safety" or "disaster (prevention)" or "exist". In fact, the infinitive "(to) exist" is written 존재해, though this can just be coincidence. Clearly, I need to improve my Korean before trying to find unknown Korean flags, as I am no nearer a positive ID on the flag! However, I would like to hope that I helped out a wee bit.
Daniel Lundberg, 3 May 2016

The flag is the Korean equivalent of the Japanese safety flags. The hangul reads 무재해 (No Accident).
Miles Li, 25 May 2017

As Miles points out, the flag is the 무재해 flag meaning "Zero Hazards" or "Disaster free". In fact, the symbol in the middle stands for numeral "0" (as in zero accidents in the workplace). Indeed further research indicated there seem to be two versions:

  1. A White horizontal flag with green symbol in the middle, as seen here. (source)
  2. A Green horizontal flag with yellow symbol in the middle, as seen here (source) and here's the construction sheet [in small size, but once you access the URL, it comes out in normal size] (source)
  3. Here's a template showing the two versions [first on top, second on bottom] (source).
  4. Here's a additional picture of the green variant with golden fringe (source)
It is part of a campaign called 무재해운동의 3대 원칙 (mujaehaeundong-ui 3dae wonchig) or "The Three Principles of Accident-free Movement", which are:
  1. 무 의 원칙 (mu-ui wonchig) or "The Zero Principle", which involves "Accidental disasters are not simply passive accidents that do not involve death or disaster, It is to eliminate industrial disaster from roots by positively discovering, grasping and solving all risk factors hidden in the workplace as well as disasters."
  2. 안전제일 의 원칙 (anjeonjeil-ui wonchig), or "Safety first", which is "identifying and resolving risk factors before acting and preventing disasters".
  3. 참여 의 원칙 (chamyeo-ui wonchig), or "Participation", which consists of "identifying and solving potential risk factors with the willingness to cooperate with each other in their respective situations, it means practicing problem-solving behavior." (source)

The second variant of the flag seems to be the official one as created by the 안전보건공단 (anjeonbogeongongdan), or "Korea Occupational Safety & Health Agency". (source #1 and (source #2). For additional information go to KOSHA. (official website)
Esteban Rivera, 25 May 2017