NSC expo
Subscribe or Register
View Cart  

Earn recertification points from the Board of Certified Safety Professionals by taking a quiz about this issue.

What's Your Opinion?

Should all workers have the right to earn paid sick leave?

Take the poll and add your comment.

Vote   Results


Does your CEO 'Get it?'

Tell us why on the submission form and your CEO could appear among the 2017 selections.

Get the news that's
important to you.

Sign up for Safety+Health’s free monthly newsletters on:

  • Construction
  • Health Care Workers
  • Manufacturing
  • Mining, Oil and Gas
  • Office Safety Tips
  • Transportation
  • Worker Health and Wellness
  • Subscribe today

    Employers too reliant on fire departments for confined space rescue: study

    March 7, 2012

    • / Print
    • Reprints
    • Text Size:
      A A

    Berkeley, CA – Employers may over-rely on fire departments for permit-required confined space rescues, indicates research from the University of California, Berkeley.

    Researchers analyzed data on confined space fatalities from 1992 to 2005 and a survey of large fire departments, as well data on arrival times. Of 21 companies, 57 percent said they depended on fire departments to rescue workers in confined space incidents. However, the researchers found fire departments usually cannot provide a timely rescue in a life-threatening emergency, according to the study abstract.

    The median arrival times for fire departments were five minutes for fire engines and seven minutes for technical rescue units, with rescue time estimates falling between 48 and 123 minutes. The range increased to 70 and 173 minutes when hazardous materials were present.

    As a result, researchers suggested that the proper role of a fire department is to support a properly trained and equipped onsite rescue team and provide life support following a rescue.

    The study was published in the February issue of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene.

    Post a comment to this article

    Safety+Health welcomes comments that promote respectful dialogue. Please stay on topic. Comments that contain personal attacks, profanity or abusive language – or those aggressively promoting products or services – will be removed. We reserve the right to determine which comments violate our comment policy.