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17. Preventing Unauthorized Entry | Confined Spaces Guideline

  • Issued: September 2006
  • Revised: July 2011
  • Content last reviewed: July 2011

Disclaimer: This resource has been prepared to help the workplace parties understand some of their obligations under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) and regulations. It is not legal advice. It is not intended to replace the OHSA or the regulations. For further information please see full disclaimer.

Section 17 - Confined Spaces Regulation (O. Reg. 632/05)

  • 17. If there is a possibility of unauthorized entry into a confined space, the employer, or in the case of a project, the constructor, shall ensure that each entrance to the confined space,
    • (a)  is adequately secured against unauthorized entry; or
    • (b)  has been provided with adequate barricades, adequate warning signs regarding unauthorized entry, or both.

Only authorized personnel are allowed entry to the confined space, in accordance with the procedures identified in the plan.

The employer or constructor, as the case may be, must ensure that measures and procedures are put in place to adequately secure each entrance to the confined space against unauthorized or accidental entry. These measures and procedures may include, but are not limited to, adequate barricades, adequate warning signs, or any combination thereof. In addition, while workers are in a confined space, there is a requirement for an attendant who should have control over access.

In some circumstances, use of signs is not practical, such as for every manhole and grate. A tool is usually required for removal of the cover, and therefore, it would likely be considered secure against entry.

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