A rock collapse in a South African mine has killed eight workers, with a ninth missing and assumed to be trapped within the mine.
Due to the nature of a ship, confined spaces are part of the daily lives for those who work within. Learning to take the correct precautions, using the right equipment and receiving the correct training within these areas is essential for seafaring personnel to ensure their safety at all times.
Even in a large, open-air area such as a quarry, the dangers of confined spaces still exist. Despite the fact that you’d think there was unlikely to be confined spaces in these environments, confined spaces are often located within equipment, below ground and in other applications with a quarry.
A confined space, an area that’s hard to enter, potentially dangerous and generally unsafe for human habitation, should always be approached with care, the correct knowledge and the correct equipment for entry. This makes sure at all times that the safety of those entering the space is not jeopardised and the risk of potentially fatal incidents is exponentially reduced.
It’s shocking to think, but the vast majority of incidents that occur within confined spaces never go reported. Even when they do, fatalities that occur as a result of an accident within an enclosed environment are rarely reported, leading to a lack of awareness of the dangers these environments pose.
Carbon dioxide, a common by-product of breathing, is lethal to humans in larger doses. The standard level of CO2 that a human can live under comfortable is around <600ppm but in many cases higher levels of CO2 are exposed to humans and can cause problems ranging from headaches to death depending on the concentration of the gas.
We can’t stress enough just how dangerous confined spaces are. Not only are areas in an enclosed environment uncomfortable for the person inside, but they’re also often hiding hidden dangers that can severely affect the health of those within or – in the worst case scenario – can cause death.