up arrow to top of page

Invisible and Potentially Deadly Hazards of Confined Spaces

Silos, storage tanks, vessels, pumps and pipelines are a few examples of confined spaces in industry. Confined spaces may appear to be safe but can contain invisible hazards such as dangerous fumes, vapors, or insufficient oxygen.

Description of a Confined Space
View from inside of a silo, confined space
Interior of a silo, which can be considered a confined space.
OSHA General Industry Standard 1910.146(c)(2) If the workplace contains permit spaces, the employer shall inform exposed employees, by posting danger signs or by any other equally effective means, of the existence and location of and the danger posed by the permit spaces. NOTE: A sign reading DANGER -- PERMIT-REQUIRED CONFINED SPACE, DO NOT ENTER or using other similar language would satisfy the requirement for a sign.
  • Never enter a confined space unless you have the proper training, equipment, and procedures!
  • Determine if confined spaces have a potentially hazardous atmosphere before entering by using special air testing equipment.
Entry to a confined space with a danger sign visible.

Never assume that an open top pit is safe to enter, even if it is not labeled as a confined space. Pits, man-holes, sewer tunnels and tanks under construction could still pose dangers.

Permit-required confined spaces are confined spaces that have any hazard such as:

  • hazardous atmosphere - such as low oxygen or a toxic gas
  • potential for engulfment or suffocation - a risk of drowning or being buried
  • a layout that might trap a worker through converging walls or a sloped floor
  • or any other serious safety or health hazard

Permit-required confined spaces require workers to take safety measures such as rescue equipment to safely remove someone out of a confined space without entering.

Entry to a confined space with a danger sign visible.

Weeklysafety.com is giving away 10 free safety topics, no credit card required! Take advantage and grab your free set of safety meeting topics today by clicking the button below.

A membership to Weeklysafety.com comes at a very low price that never goes up no matter how many employees you have and no matter how many awesome safety topics you use. Included in your membership are hundreds of safety topics that you can use for your safety meetings, toolbox talks and safety moments.

Take a look at our website to learn more about everything that comes with a Weeklysafety.com membership. Click below to learn more today!

Download this free report today and get inspired to improve your workplace safety program!

No items found.