What is Confined Space Rescue?


Courtesy of Code Red Safety

Confined space rescue is one of the most dangerous and difficult types of rescue known in the world today. Imagine that you see a construction worker trapped in a sewer from the road above. How would you assist that person if you didn’t have confined space rescue training? You really wouldn’t know where to start.

Confined space rescue involves assisting people stuck in tight, confined spaces. Employees and innocent bystanders can become trapped in areas that can only be accessed through confined spaces. These areas often include sewers, vaults, storage tanks, silos, and more. Additionally, some people who work in coal mines, jewelry mines, factories, and oil rigs can be susceptible to becoming trapped in confined spaces. Confined Space Rescuers wear PPE (personal protection equipment) ranging from rope harnesses to MSA scba air tanks.

Plenty of work accidents can make a confined space rescue necessary. Buildings, mines, sewer entrances, and other areas collapse frequently. When a bridge collapses, the people working on that bridge may also need rescued from confined spaces. It’s hard to tell exactly how many different professions may one day need confined space rescues. A lot of workers in any industry are in danger more often than not. You never know when the type of training for confined space rescue might come in handy.

It takes a special person to perform confined space rescue. They know that they are in a lot of danger when they perform these rescues. Many rescuers lose their lives each year when they attempt to free people from confined spaces. These rescuers are brave and fearless.


Mine collapses cause a lot of terror and plenty of dangerous situations for rescuers. The 2010 Chilean mining accident proved this to be true. Those miners were trapped deep inside a collapsed mine for 69 days. The Chilean government, aided by plenty of other countries, was forced to perform confined space rescues. They used gigantic drills to pierce the collapsed mine so that the rescue workers could dig through the rubble to bring the workers to safety. 33 men had the wishes and prayers of an entire country on their shoulders as they were brought back home to their families.

Mine collapses can be dangerous for a number of reasons. Those men in Chile could have easily been crushed by the weight of all the dirt, stone, and other materials. There’s always a risk of flooding in mines. Those men were lucky that they found a dry portion of the mine where they could stay dry and away from the dangers of drowning. Mines also contain gases that can be extremely harmful and even fatal to the trapped workers. Those who perform the rescues are also in danger due to these gases as well as floods and other collapses.

Oil Rig Workers

Oil rigs also experience their fair share of collapses. An oil rig collapses last week just off the coast of Mexico. Two workers were killed in the incident, and many more were wounded. They had to be rescued out of confined spaces during this event. Authorities blamed one of the rig’s legs for the collapse. The safety and inspection of that rig is under heavy scrutiny from Mexico’s government. A full investigation has been planned, and all parties reported that they will cooperate.

Without the heroic efforts of the rescue workers, many more people may have died in this tragic incident. The rescues dove into action right away. They had to put on their equipment and pull those injured workers out of confined spaces as quickly as possible. The men who sustained injuries in the incident are expected to make full recoveries. None of the rescuers were injured or killed.

Factory Production Workers

Factory collapses are so common in the world today. Bangladesh experienced a horrific collapse two years ago, when more than 1,100 people were killed at a factory collapse in Dhaka. The death toll would have been much higher, but confined space rescues took to the scene quickly to save lives. More than 2,500 injured people made it out of the building safely thanks to these courageous workers. Although this was one of the deadliest building collapses in the world, the rescue workers did a fantastic job as they prevented more people from dying.

Confined Space Rescue Training

The people responsible for these amazing acts likely received confined space rescue training. Their training allowed them to survey the scenes of these accidents and quickly figure out the best courses of action. They needed the knowledge and foresight to make the plans for rescuing the injured people. They needed bravery and perseverance to help as many people as they could in the shortest amount of time possible. These disasters require that some people step up and perform one of the most important jobs in the world. Confined space rescue workers are inspirations to everyone.

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