Confined Space Safety Training

Summary

Confined Space Entry (OSHA 29 CFR 1910.146 and 1926.1201)

Employers are required to assess their facilities and work sites to determine if there are any confined spaces. Confined spaces must then be evaluated to determine if they are permit-required confined spaces. A formal plan must be developed for entry and rescue. No employee shall be required to enter any permit-required confined space unless a written confined space entry procedure is developed and implemented.

“Confined space” means a space that:
(1) Is large enough and so configured that an employee can bodily enter and perform assigned work; and
(2) Has limited or restricted means for entry or exit (for example, tanks, vessels, silos, storage bins, hoppers, vaults, and pits are spaces that may have limited means of entry.); and
(3) Is not designed for continuous employee occupancy.

Confined spaces are classified as either a “Non-permit confined space or Permit-required confined space”.

“Non-permit confined space” means a confined space that does not contain or, with respect to atmospheric hazards, have the potential to contain any hazard capable of causing death or serious physical harm. (Awareness Training Recommended)

Permit-required confined space (permit space)” means a confined space that has one or more of the following characteristics:
(1) Contains or has a potential to contain a hazardous atmosphere;
(2) Contains a material that has the potential for engulfing an entrant;
(3) Has an internal configuration such that an entrant could be trapped or asphyxiated by inwardly converging walls or by a floor which slopes downward and tapers to a smaller cross-section; or
(4) Contains any other recognized serious safety or health hazard.
(Operational Training Required)

There is a Confined Space Standard for both the General Industry and Construction Industry. Which Confined Spaces Standard should an employer follow?

It is important that employers ask the question, is the work done in the “permit space” maintenance or a construction activity? The answer to that question will determine if you follow 1910.146 (General Industry), 1926 Subpart AA (Construction Industry) or both.

Confined Space Safety Training Resources
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