IOSH subject-matter experts drawn from a selection of staff and members have contributed to new guidance on Safe working in confined spaces, delivered collaboratively as one of the joint technical cooperation initiatives between IOSH and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).
The new guidance document is freely available to download from the EBRD website here.
It is aimed primarily at building the capacity of contractors and operational teams to help address the high number of fatalities and accidents reported in some countries, in particular in Central Asia and the Western Balkans, where the EBRD operates.
“Confined spaces were identified early on in our collaboration with EBRD as one of the priority areas that we aimed to tackle through our joint charitable aims, in line with our non-health related fatalities priority area,” said IOSH Strategic Engagement Manager Gisela Derrick.
“The free guide provides a practical toolkit that can be easily applied by teams on the ground covering how to assess and manage the risks of working in confined spaces.
While existing guidance is available in this area, a key requirement was to ensure it could be applied in many countries, irrespective of their national regulations, and based on latest international good practice.”
Special attention was made to the language, images and scenarios shared, ensuring wide transferability and applicability across many regions, various industry sectors, and different socio-economic levels. The guide is currently available in English and will be translated into Russian and potentially other languages as well.
“This has been a rewarding and insightful collaboration between EBRD and IOSH– and everyone’s input in seeing this piece through is much appreciated,” said Ms Derrick.
“Our contribution has been acknowledged by EBRD on the first page of this international guide which will reach many people in the field, across many countries and, we hope, helping them improve their working conditions to prevent more accidents. It is also expected to be a useful practical resource for the OSH professional community.”
Special appreciation goes to the IOSH members who shared their time and expertise: John Allen (CMIOSH), Malcolm McIntyre (CFIOSH), Mike Brock (GradIOSH), Andrew Downie (TechIOSH), Ashok Garlapati (CFIOSH), Keith Hole (CFIOSH), Mike Cowie (CMIOSH), David Hortop (CMIOSH), Richard Jones (CFIOSH), and Lucy Pritchard (TechIOSH).
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