NOM stands for Norma Oficial Mexicana, and is a series of standards that apply to businesses operating in Mexico. There are dozens of these standards that can apply to a variety of different industries. NOM-26 is the standard that is used for regulating pipe marking. This is an important safety requirement for manufacturing facilities as well as other businesses.

Standard Doesn’t Apply to All Situations

In the NOM-26 standard there are certain things where the requirements do not apply. Some of the areas that are specifically mentioned as not having to follow the NOM-26 regulations are: signs for land, sea, river, or air transportation, underground or hidden pipelines, electrical pipelines, pipelines found in nuclear power plants. In addition, pipes installed in water purification plants and their distribution networks.

Key Definitions

There are some key definitions that one needs to be aware of when attempting to follow the NOM-26 regulations. They are:

  • Identification Band – This is the arrangement of the safety color that is used. It is either tape or a transverse ring on the longitudinal part of the pipe.
  • Safety Color – The color that is restricted in where it can be used. It is intended to indicate the presence of danger.
  • Contrast Color – A color that is used to highlight or bring attention to the safety color.
  • Fluids – Any liquid or gaseous substance that do not have their own shape but rather adopt the shape of the container they are in.
  • Dangerous Fluids – Any liquids or gasses that may cause an accident, disease, or other harm to people who are exposed.
  • Low Risk Fluids – Any liquid or gas which has intrinsic characteristics that are not dangerous.

Any company that is doing business in Mexico, or with companies that are based in Mexico, will want to become familiar with the NOM-26 standards. This will help to be prepared in the event that there is any type of safety problem. In addition, it will be helpful should some pipe that is imported be marked with this standard.


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