The OSHA Confined Space Regulation, CFR1910.146 is designed to prevent accidents to employees when working in a space where one has limited or restricted access for entry or exit and while in that area might meet up with liquids, gases or obstacles. Thus, a person entering a confined space must be fully trained in the hazards to be faced and must wear the appropriate protective clothing. The area is also constantly monitored for air quality. Before entering a confined space area, one has to receive a “Confined Space Permit.” To help the process along, a series of signs and tags have been created. They contain proper procedures to follow, Caution and Danger announcements as well as directions for those both entering the area or assisting in the operation.
The “DANGER” Permit Required Confined Space, Do Not Enter Sign is displayed prominently in such locations that insure that absolutely no one with the exception of those granted entry will enter the Confined Space Area. The signs may also include the safety gear that must be worn when entering the area. This would include they type of shoes, eye wear, hard hat and gloves necessary. While not always possible, the Confined Space area may also have signs indicating the presence of the know gas, i.e. Chlorine or Methane. This would be in conjunction with the use of Respirators if required in the operation. The signs should be made out of a heavy-duty material, such as laminated plastic, or aluminum to insure they can withstand any and all environmental conditions while continuing to display their message.
A number of safety tags can also be effective during a Confined Space Operation. A tag can be issued as “The Confined Space Entry Permit.” It would contain the name of the person with permission to enter the space, date and time of entry, equipment location, work to be done and the allotted time to be within the confined space area. Another tag may contain the checklist of work to be done to include initial evaluations, testing, repairing, construction work and final review prior to egress. And an attendant to monitor the Entrant as he enters and works in the confined space also has a tag or tags to include check lists and instructions to follow.
There are safety tags for all personnel that are involved in a Confined Space operation. They include: The Entry Supervisor, The Entrant, The Attendant, Test Technicians, Emergency Service Personnel, Rescue Service Personnel, and Contractor Representatives. As with signs, the tags should be made from heavy duty material, such as laminated safety tags.