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OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov.
June 1, 1994
MEMORANDUM FOR: REGIONAL ADMINISTRATORS FROM: JOHN B. MILES, JR., DIRECTOR DIRECTORATE OF COMPLIANCE PROGRAMS SUBJECT: TRANSMITTAL OF THE CONFINED SPACE SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT WITH THE AMERICAN GAS ASSOCIATION
Attached you will find a copy of OSHA's settlement agreement with the American Gas Association, addressing the applicability of the Confined Space Standard (29 CFR 1910.146). The settlement notes, among other things, that many confined space operations in the Gas industry, including vaults, are governed by regulations issued by the Department of Transportation's Office of Pipeline Safety. The confined space standard would apply only to those operations where DOT/OPS regulations do not address working conditions.
Please provide copies of this memorandum, the settlement agreement and our letter to the American Gas Association (also attached) to all Area Offices and to State Designees, for their information. These items will also be forwarded for inclusion in OCIS.
Questions on this topic should be directed to the Office of General Industry Compliance Assistance, attention: Donald Kallstrom.
If you have further questions concerning this clarification, please contact Mr. Don Kallstrom in the Office of General Industry Compliance Assistance (202) 219-8031.
H. Berrien Zettler, Deputy Director
Directorate of Compliance Programs
[NOTE: To see the referenced settlement agreement, search on the CWSA's database.]