Tag Archives: Enclosed spaces

Enclosed spaces- where to find information


Enclosed, Confined and Dangerous Spaces

A quick diversion away from certification this post to pass on some useful links for information related to entry into enclosed spaces.

This very important safety topic is confused by the variation in names adopted to describe such spaced. I have therefore included the name used in each reference with the appropriate definition.


“2.1 Enclosed space means a space which has any of the following characteristics: .

1 limited openings for entry and exit;

.2 inadequate ventilation; and

.3 is not designed for continuous worker occupancy,

and includes, but is not limited to, cargo spaces, double bottoms, fuel tanks, ballast tanks, cargo pump-rooms, cargo compressor rooms, cofferdams, chain lockers, void spaces, duct keels, inter-barrier spaces, boilers, engine crankcases, engine scavenge air receivers, sewage tanks, and adjacent connected spaces. This list is not exhaustive and a list should be produced on a ship-by-ship basis to identify enclosed spaces.”


“15.1.1 An enclosed space is one that:has limited openings for entry and exit; has inadequate ventilation; and  is not designed for continuous worker occupation.”

UK SI 1988 No. 1638 – The Merchant Shipping (Entry into Dangerous Spaces) Regulations

“dangerous space” means any enclosed or confined space in which it is foreseeable that the atmosphere may at some stage contain toxic or flammable gases or vapours, or be deficient in oxygen, to the extent that it may endanger the life or health of any person entering that space;

UK shore based guidelines and regulations

UK HSE confined space webpageHSE

“A confined space is a place which is substantially enclosed (though not always entirely), and where serious injury can occur from hazardous substances or conditions within the space or nearby (e.g. lack of oxygen).”

UK confined space regulations 1997Approved code practice

UK approved code of practice

Ship certification exploring will continue in the next post.

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