We are aware that the HSE are targeting large public bodies such as Local Authorities and Hospitals, specifically looking at procedures and working practices in confined spaces.
The confined spaces procedures may also be linked to inspections by the Fire Authority regarding their enforcement of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 pertaining to Fire Precautions within confined spaces. Both highlight the need for vigilance with respect to maintaining effective Fire Precautions and good working practices within confined spaces.
As a result of our successful work in finding resolutions to problems in this arena we recently gave presentations to a local wing of the National Association of Fire Officers, to 5 NHS Foundation Trusts and to two major Universities. We started with Hospitals because their patients often have great difficulty in evacuating, and also there have been some recent events that highlighted shortcomings in certain NHS premises with regards to Fire Precautions. But the risk of extensive Fire Damage, injury or fatality exists in many large buildings of all descriptions.
The presentation outlines what our clients need to be aware of when carrying out works in confined spaces and is taken from our track record of advising/training and survey works in the area of confined spaces.
Our talk is brief and to the point, is well illustrated and has proved to raise profound interest and discussion, where underground ducts, vertical risers, roof voids and small plantrooms and the like exist. We are finding that eyes are opened wide at the locations we have attended so far!
The presentation outlines the following
- The confined spaces legislation
- Appropriate Risk Assessment
- what the HSE are looking for when they arrive on site
- what the RRO demands in respect of the management of these areas and Fire Manuals
- How we are resolving the problem together with our clients.