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General Working Conditions » Illumination


Adequate illumination is required in walkways, work areas, and entrances to provide a safe work environment. [29 CFR 1915.92(a)] Permanent, temporary, and emergency lighting must be provided as required. The components of the lighting must be safe for the location in which it is installed.



Illumination
Figure 1: Work area inside vessel not yet properly illuminated
Figure 1: Work area inside vessel not yet properly illuminated.

Figure 2: Proper temporary lighting
Figure 2: Proper temporary lighting.

Figure 3: Sign warning workers to carry flashlight
Figure 3: Sign warning workers to carry flashlight.

Potential Hazards:

Inadequate or poor-quality lighting systems can lead to:

  • Slips, trips, and falls.
  • Electric shocks and burns.
  • The inability to exit the space.

Requirements and Example Solutions:

  • Temporary lights must have guards or be recessed to prevent accidental contact with the bulb. [29 CFR 1915.92(b)(1) and 29 CFR 1915.93(c)(1)] See Figure 1.
  • Temporary lights must: [29 CFR 1915.92(b)(2)]
    • Be equipped with heavy duty electric cords.
    • Not be suspended by their electric cords.
    • Have splices equal to the insulation of the cable.
  • Cords must be protected from damage. [29 CFR 1915.92(b)(3)]
  • Exposed non-current-carrying metal parts of temporary lights must be grounded. [29 CFR 1915.92(c)]
  • Temporary lighting must be equipped with overcurrent protection such as fuses or circuit breakers. [29 CFR 1915.92(f)]
  • Portable emergency lighting such as flashlights or light sticks must be provided. [29 CFR 1915.92(d)]
  • Workers must not enter dark spaces without a suitable portable light. [29 CFR 1915.92(e)]
  • Burning torches should not be used to illuminate work areas.

Additional Resources:

  • A11.1: Illumination, ANSI Standard
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