The aim of the revised ANSI Z117 standard , Safety Requirements for Confined Spaces, is to provide for the minimum performance requirements necessary in developing and implementing a comprehensive confined space program for the protection of workers. A PDF download comparing versions 1995, 2003 and 2009 is also available in combination with the standard.
The Z117 Standard was developed by ANSI accredited ASSE ASC Z117. According to the Z117 ASC, a review of 200 confined space fatality cases from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) database occurring between 1993 and 2004 confirmed that the distribution of causes had not changed to any significant degree. The committee also noted that approximately 65 percent of incidents with fatalities involved atmospheric contamination and engulfment accounted for less than 10 percent of the identified causes. However, the fatality cases in this sampling do not represent all U.S. confined space incidents resulting in fatalities.
***Scope for ANSI ASSE Z117.1
1.1 Scope. This standard provides minimum safety requirements to be followed while entering, exiting and working in confined spaces at normal atmospheric pressure.
1.2 Exceptions. This standard does not pertain to underground mining, tunneling, caisson work, intentionally inert confined spaces, or other similar tasks that have established national consensus standards.
1.3 Purpose. The purpose of this standard is to establish minimum requirements and procedures for the safety and health of employees who work in, and in connection with, confined spaces.
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