Sustaining life in hazardous environments...
Sustaining life in hazardous environments...

Confined Space Series - What is a Confined Space?

4th January 2016

The simplest way to define this is to refer to the regulations:

Confined Space Regulations 1997 ‘Regulation 1: ‘Confined Space’ means any place, including any chamber, tank, vat, silo, pit, trench, pipe, sewer, flue, well or similar space in which, by virtue of its enclosed nature, there arises a reasonably foreseeable specified risk'.

There are therefore two features which determine if an area is actually covered by the regulations:

1. A substantially, but not entirely enclosed space

2. There is ‘a reasonable foreseeable specified risk’

E.g. you may have a small room which could be a ‘substantially enclosed space’, but if there is no ‘reasonably foreseeable specified risk’ then the Confined Space Regulations don’t apply.

E.g. if in that same room the only access/ egress was via a small opening in the ceiling and the only means of entry was using Man Riding Equipment, there would then be a ‘reasonably foreseeable specified risk’ due to access/egress issues. This would then need to be classified as a Confined Space.

Remember two rules about the Confined Space:

Rule No.1  Does the Confined Space have to be entered?

Rule No.2  If so, then a Risk Assessment must be carried out.


Follow us on our social media to be the first to know when the new articles come out.




This site uses some unobtrusive cookies to store information on your computer. By using our site you accept our Terms And Conditions and Privacy Policy. ×