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Working in a confined space

There are confined spaces (such as basements) in various UT buildings. The technical systems of the buildings are often located in such spaces. These spaces need to be accessed from time to time for maintenance, malfunctions, inspections and installation work.

The Facilities Services Centre has a policy in place that states that only the Facilities Services Centre is allowed to access these spaces and install - or have third parties install - systems there. Deviations are only possible under certain conditions and in exceptional circumstances, when there is no alternative. For instance, users of the building have placed specific equipment in the basement for research configurations in a number of circumstances. The user is then responsible for this equipment.

From the perspective of safety, it is important to make clear agreements about accessing and performing work in these spaces, as these spaces are often considered confined spaces to which specific agreements apply.

Rules for working in confined spaces

The specific agreements for each space are studied to ensure both the safety and the proper operation of the installation. These are recorded in writing and signed by a representative of the Facilities Services Centre and a representative of the user.

Examples of rules:

 

1.

Wearing a safety cap or helmet is manditory.

 

2.

Mandatory presence notification on the white board at the entrance, to be removed when leaving the space.

 

3.

Access only by authorised staff.

 

4.

Access door may not be left unlocked without attendance.

 

5.

Hazardous work (e.g. welding, grinding) may only be carried out with a work permit of the Facilities Services Centre the University of Twente.

 

6.

Installation work may only be carried out with knowledge and permission of the Facilities Services Centre.

Responsibility

The spaces are the property to the Facilities Services Centre. The aforementioned work takes place under the responsibility of the Facilities Services Centre. The employer is responsible for the risk assessment related to the work carried out by its employees. The employee is required to observe the rules imposed by the owner or the employer.

Supervisors

The contract managers and the EHS coordinator of the Facilities Services Centre are supervisors. They may address parties that fail to comply with the agreements and refuse access to them in case of repeat offences.

Contact

For questions or more information, please contact the EHS coordinator of the Facility Department: Henri Holtkamp, henri.holtkamp@utwente.nl, phone no. +31 (0)53 489 5820.