Posted on Leave a comment

Three levels of Confined Space but MULTIPLE Hazards and Risks!

When do you training and safety talks about confined space entry or NOT!, what do you cover with your teams?

Identifying a Confined Space 1) A location will be considered a Confined Space if: a. It is determined by an approved Hazard Assessment that it is a Confined Space, b. Entry requires permitting and gas testing, as designated by area work practices, c. Activities conducted within or within the vicinity of the Confined Space has the potential to change the atmospheric conditions of the Confined Space, d. Requires additional equipment preparation and controls to permit safe entry.

Although we are talking LEVELS you must also remember TYPES are part of the risks!

Hazard assessments related to Confined Space or Restricted Space Entries are conducted by various levels of employers and employees involved in the preparation of and entry of the Confined or Restricted Space. Multiple levels of hazard assessment are required to determine if a space is a Confined Space – Level 1, 2 or 3 or a Restricted Space. Identification of the type of space will be determined by the specific tasks conducted within the space.

a. Initial Hazard Assessment for Entry i. Normally performed by the equipment owner, ii. Considers current and past service of the equipment, iii. Considers the design, access and egress limitations, iv. Considers all preparation and controls required if applicable, to permit safe entry.

b. Work Scope Hazard Assessment (e.g. Job Safety Analysis) i. Normally performed by the supervision of the crew undertaking the task with worker involvement, ii. Considers the detailed scope of work to be performed and the impact that the work may have on the atmosphere within the space or the personnel entering or working in the space, iii. Identifies the hazards associated with the detailed scope of work to be performed and details the required controls to address the hazards identified, iv. Any changes in work scope at any time must be relayed back to the equipment owner so that the classification of entry can be re examined to ensure the correct classification of the space.

c. Field Level Hazard Assessment i. Normally performed by all workers involved in the task, ii. Considers immediate ambient conditions in the task area prior to commencement of work, iii. Identifies hazards related to the specific task(s) being performed and details the required controls to address the hazards identified,

Confined Space Level 1

1) A Confined Space will be considered Level 1 if the entry is either the first or initial entry or any of the following apply: a. The hazards in the Confined Space or in its proximity are either not known or have not been determined, b. Oxygen concentration is less than 19.5% or more than 23.0% by volume, c. Explosive or flammable atmosphere between 10% and 20% Lower Explosive Limit (“LEL”), d. The area atmosphere exceeds the protective limits of air purifying respiratory equipment or is at/or above IDLH (Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health) concentration of a toxic material/substance.

2) The following controls must be put in place for a “Level 1” classified entry: a. Will require an approved hazard assessment, b. Supplied breathing air available and worn, c. Continuous atmospheric testing, d. All Entrants and Monitors must be trained in the use of supplied breathing air equipment, e. PPE as per the approved hazard assessment, f. A competent Confined Space Monitor in attendance at all times, g. A specific, documented Rescue Plan which has been developed reviewed and approved by the equipment owner and the Emergency Response Representative, h. A valid Confined Space Entry Permit, i. A valid Level One Entry Tag hung at each entrance, j. A documented Evacuation Plan, k. Confined Space Signage as per the Level of Entry classification.

Confined Space Level 2

1) A Confined Space will be considered Level 2 if all identified hazards are controlled and a. Oxygen concentration is between 19.5% and 23.0% by volume, and

2) Either of the following exists or is likely to exist: a. Explosive or flammable atmosphere > (greater than) 1% and < (less than) 10% Lower Explosive Limit (“LEL”), b. Concentration of toxic substances exceeds 50% of the Occupational Exposure Limit (“OEL”).

3) The following controls must be put in place for a “Level 2” classified entry: a. Will require an approved hazard assessment, b. A Competent Confined Space Monitor in attendance at all times, c. A valid Confined Space Entry Permit, d. A valid Safe Entry Tag hung at each entrance, e. A documented Evacuation Plan, f. A valid Rescue Plan, g. PPE as per the approved hazard assessment, h. Continuous atmospheric testing if there is a potential for the atmosphere to change unpredictably, i. Confined Space Signage as per the Level of Entry Classification.

Confined Space Level 3

1) A Confined Space will be considered Level 3 if all identified hazards are controlled, the potential for change is unlikely, and all of the following apply: a. Oxygen concentration is between 19.5% and 23.0% by volume, b. Concentration of explosive gases is less than 1% of LEL, c. Airborne concentration of toxic substances is less than 50% of OEL.

2) The following controls must be put in place for a “Level 3” classified entry: a. Will require an approved hazard assessment, b. A competent Confined Space Monitor may be required, c. A valid Confined Space Entry Permit, d. A valid Safe Entry Tag hung at each entrance, e. A documented Evacuation Plan, f. A valid Rescue Plan, g. PPE as per the approved hazard assessment, h. Confined Space Signage as per the Level of Entry classification.

Danger, Do Not Enter:

This sign overrides all other signs at entrances to Confined Spaces. When it is in place NO ONE is to enter the space under any circumstances. Operations personnel are the only personnel who are allowed to remove this sign. This sign will be placed immediately upon opening the space by the equipment owner and if an event occurs that could compromise the conditions in a Confined Space.

For Confined Space Level 1 entries the “DANGER, DO NOT ENTER” sign must be hung at the entrances every time the space is left unattended. For Confined Space Level 2 & 3 entries, a “DANGER DO NOT ENTER” sign must be hung at the entrance whenever the space is evacuated due to emergency. If entry is required into a Confined Space, Operations personnel must be contacted to evaluate the conditions of the Confined Space, test the atmosphere of the space, and remove the sign if everything meets the standards to enter and work.

Operations Personnel will hang a Confined Space Monitor and Permit Required for Entry Sign to signify that a space is safe to enter. People authorized to enter must have a valid Safe Work Entry Permit and a valid Safe Entry Tag is in place. There must be a Confined Space Monitor present at the entrance prior to entering. This sign can be removed by the Confined Space Monitor provided all the permit criteria are met and the Safe Entry Tag is valid and current.

For Level 2 & 3 Confined Space entries, when the Confined Space is left unattended, provided the status of the Confined Space has not changed, this sign must be hung at the entrance by the Confined Space Monitor when leaving.

Level ONE and TWO

CONFINED SPACE LEVEL 1 & 2 ENTRY

For every Level 1 and 2 Confined Space Entry, a competent Confined Space Monitor will be assigned. 2) The Confined Space Monitor will: a. Hold valid Monitor Certification, b. Be deemed competent as a Confined Space Monitor by their employer, c. Be capable and equipped to summon rescue personnel, if required. A means of communication is mandatory, d. Be in communication or visual contact with personnel inside the Confined Space at all times, e. Initiate evacuation as necessary, and ensure proper signage is posted at the entrance(s) to the Confined Space, f. NEVER leave the entrance to the Confined Space with people inside unless properly relieved by another Certified Monitor, g. NEVER enter the Confined Space for any reason, h. NEVER become directly involved in any activity that distracts from the primary duty as a Confined Space Monitor. i. After verifying all personnel have exited the Confined Space, ensure correct signage is in place prior to leaving the Confined Space entrance(s) unattended (e.g. breaks and end of shift), j. Control the number of personnel allowed in the Confined Space, as identified by hazard assessment, k. Maintain a Confined Space Entry and Exit log (as per site specific requirements) for the duration of the job. The logs must be safely stored for record retention purposes, l. Ensure Entry and Exit points are kept clear and clean, m. Maintain awareness of potential hazards in the vicinity of the Confined Space that may affect the health and safety of the worker(s) inside.

CONFINED SPACE LEVEL 3 ENTRY

Confined Space Level 3 Entries may require a Confined Space Monitor as determined by the hazard assessment. If a Confined Space Monitor is not deemed necessary a competent worker designated by the employer must be in communication with the worker(s) in a Confined Space

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.