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PDFWAC 296-155-20301

Definitions applicable to confined spaces.

Confined space. A space that:
(1) Is large enough and so configured that an employee can bodily enter and perform assigned work; and
(2) Has limited or restricted means for entry or exit (for example, tanks, vessels, silos, storage bins, hoppers, vaults, and pits are spaces that may have limited means of entry); and
(3) Is not designed for continuous employee occupancy.
Corrosives. Substances which in contact with living tissue cause destruction of the tissue by chemical action.
Hazardous atmosphere. An atmosphere that may expose employees to the risk of death, incapacitation, impairment of ability to self-rescue (that is, escape unaided from a permit space), injury, or acute illness from one or more of the following causes:
(1) Flammable gas, vapor, or mist in excess of 10% of its lower flammable limit (LFL);
(2) Airborne combustible dust at a concentration that meets or exceeds its LFL;
This concentration may be approximated as a condition in which the dust obscures vision at a distance of 5 feet (1.52m) or less.
(3) Atmospheric oxygen concentration below 19.5% or above 23.5%;
(4) Atmospheric concentration of any substance for which a dose or a permissible exposure limit is published in chapter 296-62 WAC, general occupational health standards, or chapter 296-841 WAC, Airborne contaminants, and which could result in employee exposure in excess of its dose or permissible exposure limit;
An atmospheric concentration of any substance that is not capable of causing death, incapacitation, impairment of ability to self-rescue, injury, or acute illness due to its health effects is not covered by this provision.
(5) Any other atmospheric condition that is immediately dangerous to life or health.
For air contaminants for which WISHA has not determined a dose or permissible exposure limit, other sources of information, such as safety data sheets that comply with the Hazard Communication Standard, WAC 296-901-140, published information, and internal documents can provide guidance in establishing acceptable atmospheric conditions.
Irritants. Substances which on immediate, prolonged, or repeated contact with normal living tissue will induce a local inflammatory reaction.
Oxygen deficient atmospheres. Atmospheres at sea level having less than 19.5% oxygen by volume or having a partial pressure of 148 millimeters of mercury or less. This may deviate when working at higher altitudes and should be determined for an individual location. Factors such as acclimatization, physical condition of persons involved, etc., must be considered for such circumstances and conditions. (See chapter 296-809 WAC, Confined spaces.)
Toxicants. Substances which have the inherent capacity to produce personal injury or illness to persons by absorption through any body surface.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, 49.17.040, 49.17.050, 49.17.060. WSR 16-09-085, § 296-155-20301, filed 4/19/16, effective 5/20/16. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, 49.17.040, 49.17.050, 49.17.060 and 29 C.F.R. 1910 Subpart Z. WSR 14-07-086, § 296-155-20301, filed 3/18/14, effective 5/1/14. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, 49.17.040, 49.17.050, 49.17.060. WSR 07-05-062, § 296-155-20301, filed 2/20/07, effective 4/1/07; WSR 05-03-093, § 296-155-20301, filed 1/18/05, effective 3/1/05. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, [49.17].040, and [49.17].050. WSR 01-11-038, § 296-155-20301, filed 5/9/01, effective 9/1/01. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.040, [49.17].050 and [49.17].060. WSR 95-17-036, § 296-155-20301, filed 8/9/95, effective 9/25/95. Statutory Authority: Chapter 49.17 RCW. WSR 95-04-007, § 296-155-20301, filed 1/18/95, effective 3/1/95; WSR 91-24-017 (Order 91-07), § 296-155-20301, filed 11/22/91, effective 12/24/91. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.040 and 49.17.050. WSR 86-03-074 (Order 86-14), § 296-155-20301, filed 1/21/86.]
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