Working without requisite confined space training is not only illegal but can result in injuries, illness or death. Employers can avoid lawsuits and ensure worker wellbeing by ensuring that employees have the proper certifications and confined space tickets required for safe entry and exit.
Confined Spaces: Employer Responsibilities
Any space with more than 4 feet depth can be defined as a confined space. Once an employer identifies confined spaces on their site, it’s their legal obligation to ensure that their workers undergo proper confined space training. A confined space is a partially or wholly enclosed area with substantially limited access. Every confined space is necessarily a fully or partially enclosed space, but every enclosed space need not be a confined space.
Once the employees undergo a confined space course, they will acquire the understanding, skills and knowledge necessary for safe entry, navigation and exit. Employers should also put up a confined space sign to warn employees of the potential hazards associated with the space. Signs, memos or posters will prevent workers from entering the space accidentally.
For a more detailed confined space definition, please refer to the Safe Work Australia guide.
Confined Space Training Requirements
Workers who need to enter and exit in a confined space are known as ‘entrants’. Entrants should be trained to:
- Recognise different types of hazards
- Wear, store and preserve personal protective equipment
- Alert attendants or rescue teams in case of problems or emergencies
- Communicate amongst each other and attendants outside the confined space
Attendants (those who are stationed outside the confined space) should also be aware of confined space Australian standards. They should be trained to:
- Monitor work conditions
- Identify hazards
- Coordinate resources and keep count of the workers entering and exiting the space
- Maintain constant communication with workers inside the confined space
- Allow only trained and authorised personnel to enter the space
Attendants must also be trained to participate in rescue operations without entering the confined space themselves. Managers, supervisors, safety officers and employers should ensure that all workers have access to PPE before entering the space.
Confined Space Training Can Save Lives
Confined spaces may appear as if they are wide enough for people to enter and exit, but they are often dangerous and fraught with hazards. A single slip, lapse of judgement or non-compliance may result in a serious or life-threatening situation. It’s essential for employers and employees to take confined space training courses seriously.
Doing this not only saves lives but can also save thousands of dollars in claims or legal settlements.
To learn more about our targeted confined space training in Adelaide, please contact us on 1300 885 530 for information.