Many construction sites have enclosed areas where work is done. These areas can create hazards such as lack of oxygen, explosive or toxic gases, electrical shock, and materials falling from above. Many of these hazards can kill or injure workers. Many would-be rescuers have died entering a confined space.
Here Is An Example
Phillip went into a manhole to close a gate valve and it immediately collapsed. The foreman called firefighters to the scene who entered the space wearing a self-contained breathing apparatus to bring Phillip’s body out. Further investigation suggested that the manhole had not been tested or ventilated before Phillip entered and contained lots of methane gas.
- How could this accident have been prevented?
- What other hazard did the space pose?
- Have you ever had an injury from a confined space or know anyone who did? If so, what happened?
Preventing Injuries from Confined Spaces
- Treat all confined spaces as hazardous.
- Don’t enter a space until the air has been tested for oxygen, flammable vapors, and toxic chemicals.
- Ensure that structures are safe from collapse prior to entering confined spaces.
- Use personal protective equipment that is appropriate for the hazards.
- Make sure a safe and dependable method of communication is available between the person entering the space and their work partner.
- Exit the space immediately if an unsafe condition develops.
- Provide rescue and practice realistic drills.
Midsouth Mechanical has been doing business for over 25 years. We offer our industrial clients efficient and cost-effective fabrication, modification, and repair of industrial equipment. From preventive plant maintenance, designing, installing and aligning machines, our exceptional skill and craftsmanship set us apart from the competition. Our number one priority day to day is safety. To see our published weekly Toolbox Talks, follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook.