Confined Spaces Code of Practice - Australian Capital Territory

Description

You will be required to comply with this code if you intend to operate a business which requires your employees to work in confined spaces, or if you intend to design, manufacture or supply plant or structures that include or are intended to include a confined space. A confined space is an enclosed or partially enclosed space that is not designed or intended primarily to be occupied by a person and could pose a risk to health and safety as a result of:

  • an atmosphere that does not have a safe oxygen level
  • contaminants, including airborne gases, vapours and dusts, that may cause injury in the event of fire or explosion
  • harmful concentrations of any airborne contaminants
  • engulfment

Confined spaces are commonly found in vats, tanks, pits, pipes, ducts, flues, chimneys, silos, containers, pressure vessels, underground sewers, wet or dry wells, shafts, trenches, tunnels, or other similar enclosed or partially enclosed structures.

This Code of Practice is a Compliance Code. Compliance Codes are made to provide practical guidance to persons who have occupational health and safety duties or obligations. Compliance with this Code of Practice is not mandatory. Failure to comply with a Compliance Code does not give rise to civil or criminal liability. However, meeting the requirements of a Compliance Code means that you have fulfilled your occupational health and safety duties and obligations.

If you intend to conduct a business or undertaking that involve confined spaces you must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that workers or other persons are not exposed to health and safety risks arising from the business or undertaking.

The Code sets out requirements for specific controls measures including communications and safety monitoring, signs, isolation of connected plant and services, and controls to maintain a safe atmosphere within the confined space to reduce risk to the health of your employees, and meet your occupational health and safety obligations.

Please consult the Contact Officer for more information and to ascertain the level of compliance (if any) that may be required.

Service type

Code of Practice

A code of practice is a set of rules which details how people in a certain industry should behave. A code of practice can be defined as a result of legislation or by industry regulators and bodies.

Ongoing eligibility requirements

In order to manage risk, you have a duty to:

  • manage health and safety risks associated with a confined space, including risks when entering, working in, on or near a confined space, as well as the risk of inadvertent entry
  • ensuring as far as is reasonably practicable that a worker does not enter a confined space until all the duties in relation to the confined space have been complied with, for example entry permit requirements
  • establishing first aid and rescue procedures to be followed in the event of an emergency in the confined space

Other resources

Act(s) name

Work Health and Safety Act 2011 ACT

Regulation(s) name

Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011 ACT

Administering agency

Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate

Access Canberra

WorkSafe ACT

Contact details

Contact Email, Phone and Address Details for this service in simple two column table format, header then data.

General Enquiries

WorkSafe ACT

Access Canberra

Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate

Phone: 02 6207 3000
Fax: 02 6205 0336