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Confined Space Equipment Maintenance & Servicing

 

How often should safety equipment used for confined spaces be maintained?

All equipment should be inspected and function tested by a competent person immediately prior to and after each use. In addition, the following inspections and maintenance are required/recommended under various standards and legislation.

 

Lifting Equipment (Tripods, Winches, Recovery Blocks)

  • 6 monthly thorough inspection by competent person
  • Annual service / testing as required by manufacturer

Under Regulation 9 of LOLER (Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998), lifting equipment (and accessories) used for man riding should have a thorough examination on a 6 monthly basis by a competent person.  

Manufacturers state that lifting equipment should be serviced* annually.  This is not to be confused with an insurance inspection..

* This is typically carried out by the manufacturers themselves or by a service agent (CSTS is a service agent for many manufacturers).

 

Fall Arrest Equipment (Retractable Fall Arresters, Lanyards)

  • 12 monthly inspection by competent person - wire type equipment
  • 6 monthly inspection by competent person - rope or webbing equipment
  • 12 monthly service / testing as required by manufacturer

BS EN 365 (Personal Protective Equipment Against Falls From a Height...) recommends detailed inspection at least every 12 months.  INDG 367 (Inspecting Fall Arrest Equipment made from Webbing or Rope) recommends detailed inspection at least every 6 months.  Both documents state that this should be the maximum interval between inspections and users should increase inspection frequency where equipment is used in arduous conditions.

 

Harnesses

  • 12 monthly inspection by competent person - where used for fall arrest only
  • 6 monthly inspection by competent person - where used for lifting / lowering or work positioning

BS EN 365 (Personal Protective Equipment Against Falls From a Height...) recommends detailed inspection at least every 12 months but more frequently is used in arduous conditions.  LOLER  (Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998) states a thorough examination is required by a competent person at least every 6 months.

 

Compressed Air Breathing Apparatus (Full BA, Bandoliers, Escape BA)

  • Monthly inspection by a competent person
  • Annual service / testing as required by manufacturer
  • 5 yearly cylinder test
  • Major services at intervals prescribed by manufacturer (typically between 5 and 12 years)

HSG 53 (Respiratory Protective Equipment at Work) states that breathing apparatus should have thorough maintenance, inspection and tests on a monthly basis, however if it is used only occasionally then this interval can be extended to a maximum of 3 months.  Manufacturer's also state additional service intervals - check with individual manufacturers or your service agent.

 

Rebreather Escape Sets

Maintenance requirements for re-breathers vary considerably depending upon manufacturer, for example:

  • MSA - annual positive pressure leak test, 5 yearly overhaul, end of life at 10 years.
  • Drager - 2 yearly weight check, end of life at 10 years.

 

Air Compressors

  • 3 monthly air quality checks

HSG 53 (Respiratory Protective Equipment at Work) states that air supply to breathing apparatus should be air-quality tested at least every three months and more frequent when the air supply cannot be assured; in addition mobile air supply (compressors) should be tested whenever re-sited.

 

Gas Detection (Portable and Fixed)

  • Daily bump test for flammable sensors
  • 6 monthly calibration

The ATEX Directive 94/9/EC requires flammable detectors to be bump tested at the start of each use (many users also bump test their other sensors at the same time).  Gas detectors also typically require 6 monthly calibrations although this can vary between instruments so check with your manufacturer or service agent.   

 

Contact us to arrange Maintenance or Servicing.

Call us on:  01925 244144 or 01785 850333 

OR Email our North or South teams:

EMAIL NORTH

EMAIL SOUTH

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