Confined Space Entry

A confined space is difficult to get in and out of, has poor ventilation and is not designed for human occupancy.

The following are just a few examples of confines spaces: utility vault, silo, storage tank, pit, pumping station, degreaser, sump, boiler, reaction or process vessel, vat, ship's hold, sewage digester, sewer, furnace, pipeline, septic tank, cupola or other similar enclosures.

Confined spaces are dangerous because the air inside may be hazardous (there may not be enough oxygen to support life, toxic and/or flammable gases and vapors may be present); entry and escape can be difficult; the space may contain a material that can engulf (e.g., grain in a silo, water in a sewer): the internal configuration of the space may be trapping or asphyxiating by inwardly converging walls and floors; there may be other serious hazards (such as temperature and pressure extremes, electrical hazards, moving parts, noised, fall and slip hazards and communication problems), and the work being done in the space may make the air hazardous or create other serious hazards.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires that: all confined spaces in the workplace must be identified; unauthorized entry must be prevented; only trained and authorized workers (including contractors) must be allowed to enter confined spaces, and entry must only be conducted by following an OSHA-compliant, written Confined Space Entry Program.

For your safety and the safety of your coworkers, it's necessary you follow the UA's Confined Space Entry Program. If you ignore the Program you will be risking injury or even death. Confined spaces kill approximately 50 and injure approximately 5000 people per year in the U.S. alone. In almost 100% of all cases involving fatalities, the air was not tested (a requirement of the Program). Sixty percent of all fatalities involve would be rescuers (only non-entry rescues are allowed by the Program). The sad fact is that every one of these tragedies could have been prevented by following an OSHA-compliant Program.