A situation which requires confined space entry could be encountered in a variety of industrial operations. However, working in these conditions could be extremely dangerous as there are many workers and rescuers killed or injured each year. Due to any reasons such as the limited working space, low light condition, as well as the existence of toxic components, confined spaces are often more hazardous and contain more risks than traditional ones. That is why it is important to make careful preparation for every member before entering and working. Below is a list of pre entry checklist that everyone should know before working in a confined space.
1. Pre entry discussion
What is the scope of work that needs to be performed in a confined space?
Do you have the knowledge of existing contents in the confined space?
Have all of the preparation tasks been completed, including cleanup and removal of all chemicals from the working space?
Have you completed the risk assessment or hazard identification?
Have you discussed all aspects of the safety measures?
Do you have a list of all the rescue members, supervisors, attendants, and entrants?
Have you determined the starting and ending time for the authorized entry?
Have you assigned the responsibilities and roles of everybody?
Have the entry permit to work in the confined space been issued?
The current entry permit of the confined space permit up to date?
If hot work is going to be carried out, has the permit been attained?
3. Condition verification
Are all instruments used in the confined space calibrated?
Is the person who is in charge of atmospheric testing competent and qualified?
Has the confined space been tested carefully for atmospheric conditions?
Is the confined space free of dangerous hazards like the drifting vapors from sewers, piping, or tanks?
4. Testing results
Have you tested the atmospheric conditions to measure the concentrations of some toxic gases such as carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide, or others?
Is the level of oxygen content acceptable (from 19.5 % to 23.5 %)
Are vapor, flammable, or toxic gases present?
If yes, is the level of these gases acceptable? The acceptable level of LEL, carbon monoxide, as well as hydrogen sulfide are no more than 10%, 35 ppm, and 10 ppm, respectively.
Is the atmospheric testing carefully evaluated and confirmed by a trusted institution?
Will the working conditions in the confined space, such as the atmosphere, be monitored and supervised constantly during the working period?
Do you prepare a monitoring time table?
Have you reviewed the Material Safety Data Sheets, also known as the MSDS?
Have you considered all of the ventilation options during the entry or rescue?
Is there any supply of air intake to ensure that the ventilation system is always unobstructed when you are working in the confined space?
Are the atmospheric conditions ventilated or retested to meet all of the basic safety standards?
Has mechanical equipment been disengaged, chocked, or blocked?
Has the confined space been isolated from the other systems?
Have blind plates and tags been set up at the right block valves.
Have all piles around the working space been blanked?
Have all mechanical and electrical hazards been blocked and locked?
Do you place any warning signs or barrier to notify other people?
8. Personal protective equipment, tools, and clothing
Are all special equipment or tools required for the task provided?
Is there any special clothing which is required for the tasks inside the confined space, such as goggles, safety shoes, boots, or chemical suit?
Have the lighting requirements been fulfilled?
Have all of the rescue members, supervisors, attendants, and entrants acquired necessary training before entering the confined space?
Have you informed all workers and employees who might enter the confined space about the possible signs of danger during the training?
Have you provided all works and employees with the detailed instructions on how to use the equipment and gear necessary for the project?
10. Rescue or standby team
Is there a rescue member or team available outside of the confined space who can communicate constantly with the workers inside the space?
Is the rescue team of the confined space covered under the standards or OSHA or the NFPA?
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