Confined Space Definition

What is the definition of a confined space and why should your business be aware of it?

Oftentimes, a workplace will have a confined space that could present serious health and safety hazards to workers if not properly assessed. Professional health and safety consulting firms like Basin Safety are great options for those looking to protect both their workers and their company.

What is the definition of “confined space”?

According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), confined space is defined as a space in a workplace not meant for regular use but large enough only to permit workers to perform certain jobs. These spaces have narrow and limited entry and exit points. Confined spaces must be properly designed, inspected and maintained for optimal worker safety.

There are three characteristics that define a “confined space” in the health and safety industry. In order to be classified as a confined space, it must meet all three criteria. These criteria are:

  • An area or space large enough to allow workers to enter and perform job duties.
  • An area or space that cannot hold people for an extended period of time.
  • An area or space with limited room to enter and exit.

Why should your business know what the definition of confined space is?

  • Mitigating risk of injury and death — Safety consulting firms are great resources for mitigating risk of injury and in extreme cases, even death. 
  • Decreasing company liability — Employees who experience serious injury could pursue legal action against your company if you have not taken proper steps to mitigate health and safety risks. Conferring with a consulting firm like Basin Safety can help reduce the risk of legal action being taken against your business.

What are some different types of confined spaces?

  • Tanks.
  • Silos.
  • Vaults.
  • Manholes.
  • Tunnels.
  • Ductwork.
  • Pipelines.

What is a permit-required confined space?

OSHA defines a potentially hazardous confined space as a permit-required confined space. Permit-required confined spaces must, under federal law, have safety plans drawn up that acknowledge potential hazards. This kind of space typically meets the following criteria:

  • Has or may have a potentially hazardous atmosphere.
  • Has a liquid, solid, or gas that could potentially envelope or overtake a worker.
  • Has a shape that could cause a worker to become stuck or trapped.
  • Has other safety or health hazards.

Improve your business’s confined space safety with help from Basin Safety

Basin Safety could be the perfect fit for your business, if you’re looking for professional assistance in mitigating risk of injury and liability and addressing employee safety. We’re committed to helping companies build a list of their own safety goals and helping them achieve those goals. We also believe in the power of safety metrics, providing adaptive training, promoting safety culture and supporting our customers’ vision.

Contact us today to speak with one of our consultants about how we can boost confined space safety for your company.

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