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Laymen probably shake their head in confusion when they hear about confined space training and the first thing that pops into their minds is those small work cubicles in their office. They really don’t think of the thousands of people each day who go into manholes, underground vaults, silos and numerous other places. Even if these places came to mind, they probably wouldn’t be aware of the hazard’s these people face. Nor do they understand that a confined space does not have to be small only have a limited way to get in and out and pose dangers from gases and lack of oxygen.
Each year lives are lost because people were not aware of the risks and dangers posed by confined spaces, but before confined space training became mandatory far more lives were lost. Thanks to these training courses, workers now understand not only the dangers they face but also how to test for many of these dangers and even what to do to deal with them.
Reasons Why People Go Into Confined Spaces
There are many reasons why employees need to enter confined spaces. In some cases, they need to make repairs or conduct inspections or installations. In other cases, emergency personnel may need to go into a confined space to cut off gas lines or conduct a rescue.
At one time people were sent to do this type of work without knowing all the risks or how to minimize them. Today the confined space training not only makes employers and employees aware of the risks involved but also insures that they know how to operate the necessary equipment that will make entering these places and performing their jobs safer.
Hands On Experience In A Safe Environment
One of the best aspects of confined space training is that people taking the training actually get hands on experience in a confined space environment without all the hazards of course. This part of the training not only gives employees practice in a confined space but can also actually help employers identify employees who may not be suited to this kind of work.
There are literally hundreds of people who suffer from claustrophobia and don’t even know it until they are put to the test and then they panic putting themselves and possibly others at risk. By actually getting to practice in a confined space employers can actually see if any of their employees suffer from such problems and if so can then elect to place them in jobs where they are less likely to panic.
These people who go under our streets, into silos and vaults in order to install lines and pipes, make inspections and repairs are doing a service for their community. Confined space training allows them to do that service in a safer manner that benefits them and us all.
Working in confined spaces is not a job for everyone but, those who do it and do it well deserve to be well trained and safe.
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