Recent research has indicated that most enclosed space-related casualties are caused by poor training and knowledge of the correct entry procedures, or a disregard for them. Therefore, P&I Club has published a comprehensive guide to address all key issues and assist seafarers to enter enclosed spaces safely. The guide highlights shortfalls in individual company procedures in equipment, training and onboard practices.The guide takes a closer look on incidents related to enclosed spaces which have been already reported, illustrating different ways in which a seafarer can put himself in danger in these areas onboard.

Analysis of these incidents has shown the key factors that contribute to enclosed space incidents to be the following:
• poor training
• failure to follow proper procedures for enclosed space entry
• failure to recognise the danger of an enclosed space
• tendency to trust physical senses and forego testing or checks
• attempts to save a co-worker leading to short cuts and failure to follow procedures
• failure to manage safely any shore workers on board.

SOLAS sets two obligations in respect to enclosed space entry:

  • Emergency training and drills according to SOLAS Chapter III Regulation 19. 3.6.2
  • Atmosphere testing instrument for enclosed spaces according to SOLAS Chapter XI 1, Regulation 7

Four hazards are connected with enclosed space:

  • hazardous atmosphere;
  • physical or configuration hazard;
  • changing and hazardous conditions and;
  • engulfment hazard.

All enclosed spaces that have not been tested should be considered unsafe. If the atmosphere in an enclosed space is suspected or known to be unsafe, the space should only be entered when no practical alternative exists.

STS Marine SA, offers you a comprehensive training seminar on enclosed space entry. For more information please contact us