A confined space is an enclosed or partially enclosed space:
Confined space can be found in almost any workplace. The design, construction, location or atmosphere the materials or substances in it work activities being carried out in it, or the mechanical, process and safety hazards present. Confined spaces can be below or above ground. A confined space, despite its name, is not necessarily small.
Examples of confined spaces include silos, vats, hoppers, utility vaults, tanks, sewers, pipes, access shafts, truck or rail tank cars, aircraft wings, boilers, manholes, manure pits and storage bins. Ditches and trenches also may be a confined space when access is limited.
Hazards in confined space operations can include:
Poor air quality: Insufficient amount of oxygen for the worker to breathe. A substance that could make the worker ill or even cause the worker to lose consciousness in the atmosphere might contain a poisonous. maintain Breathable quality air alone will often not be sufficient with natural ventilation. Chemical exposure to skin contact or ingestion as well as inhalation of bad gases or poisons is hazardous and sometimes lethal. Fire hazard: Maybe a flammable/explosive atmosphere due to sensitive ignitable liquids and gases and combustible dust which if ignited would lead to fire or explosion.
Hazards process related such as residual chemicals, the release of contents of a supply line.
When looking for hazards in a confined space many factors need to be evaluated. There is a smaller margin of error. Evaluating potential hazards can have more serious consequences when failing to identify an error. In some cases, confined space conditions are always extremely hazardous. In other cases, unusual combination conditions are life-threatening in some circumstances. This unpredictability and variability are why hazard assessments are extremely important and need to be taken very seriously every time.
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