Many workplaces contain areas that are considered "confined spaces" because while they are not necessarily designed for people, they are large enough for workers to enter and perform certain jobs. A confined space also has limited or restricted means for entry or exit and is not designed for continuous occupancy. Confined spaces include, but are not limited to, tanks, vessels, silos, storage bins, hoppers, vaults, pits, manholes, equipment housings, duct work, pipelines, etc.
OSHA uses the term "permit-required confined space" (permit space) to describe a confined space that has one or more of the following characteristics: contains or has the potential to contain a hazardous atmosphere; contains material that has the potential to engulf an entrant; has walls that converge inward or floors that slope downward and taper into a smaller area which could trap or asphyxiate an entrant; or contains any other recognized safety or health hazard. Please contact EHS at 360-650-3064 or firstname.lastname@example.org before starting work if you are unsure whether the work area is a confined space or not.
Access to a confined space requires a permit issued by EHS for proper entry. The confined space is inspected for ingress, egress, air quality and entry personnel / supervisors are identified prior to issuance of a permit. Once issued, the Confined Space Entry permit is valid for up to 12-hours.
To request a Confined Space Entry permit, contact EHS at 360-650-3064 or by email: EHS@wwu.edu.
Hot Work Permits
The Hot-work Permit system is intended to assure that the individuals involved in construction, renovation, repair and maintenance of University buildings are aware of the hazards associated with welding or other activities that produce sparks of high levels of heat and that they implement control measures to help mitigate them. The Hot-work permit is the means by which the departments of Facilities Maintenance and EHS are able to keep track of construction activities that involve hot-work and these activities are being conducted safely. The Hot-work Permit also provides a step-by-step checklist for hot-work fire safety and serves as a reminder to contractors of their fire prevention responsibilities before during and after any hot-work is conducted.
To request a Hot-Work permit, contact EHS at 360-650-3064 or by email: EHS@wwu.edu.
Our goal at EHS is to prevent an on-the-job injury or illness from happening. Achieving this goal provides benefits to the community and the health of its members every day.
EHS offers the University community a wide range of services and information to help prevent loss and injury.
Use the Trades navigation bar or pick a Safety category button for more information on specific programs.
Communication of Safety Concerns
An important part of EHS efforts to prevent work-related injury and illness is our awareness of unsafe situations, near miss incidents, and minor injuries which don’t require workers’ compensation involvement. Your help is needed in this effort.