Blog - The Raven Speaks

The Right Training For Your Confined Space

We've made it simple to determine the level of training required for the confined spaces you encounter at your workplace with this infographic, but there is still room for questions when it comes to the content explored in each level of training offered on the market.  Different training providers often use different names for the same level of training... or worse yet, use the same names for different levels of training.

Untangle the mess with this primer on the various levels of confined space training that will meet the needs of any worker or rescuer.  Bear in mind that we had to use some headings, and because we're pretty partial to our own course names, that's what you'll see in this primer.  But pay attention to the descriptions of the training levels, not the title - that's where you'll really be able to identify what a given course is designed to accomplish, and for whom.


Group 1: Industry/Workplace

This group of folks has a trade or a task to complete inside a confined space. Entering a confined space is a secondary role for them.




Entry and Attendant

The most fundamental level of training, Entry and Attendant prepares workers to enter a basic space to perform work.  The attendant role is taught so that one worker can remain on the outside monitoring the safety of the worker inside.


Basic Rescue

Perhaps your employer has identified that the confined spaces at your workplace are low hazard, and that they'd like to see basic rescues within those spaces performed by you and your co-workers. Basic Rescue prepares you to perform fundamental rescues out of low hazard spaces.


Rescue Non-IDLH

If your employer identified that they want you and your co-workers performing rescues from your workplace confined spaces, and those spaces contain more hazards than a simple low hazard space, a Rescue for Non-IDHL course will meet your needs.  IDLH (Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health) hazards are not addressed at this level of training, but don't despair...


Rescue IDLH

Rescue IDLH will prepare workers to perform rescues from spaces that contain hazards immediately dangerous to life and health. Generally, IDLH environments are categorized that way because of atmospheric issues.  Rescue IDLH training also provides more comprehensive technical rope training to address spaces with more complex internal configurations.


Group 2: Emergency Response

Emergency Responders seeking confined space training are likely members of a fire department, or a dedicated emergency response team at an industrial site. When they arrive at a confined space, their primary role is rescue. They are not performing other tasks within a confined space, and then switching hats to "rescuer" when the need arises.  The levels of training offered to this group focus heavily on the skills required to respond to unexpected spaces encountered throughout a callout zone or changing industrial site.



Confined Space Operator

Operations training is appropriate for many team members, and some teams can run an entire response with operations-trained personnel.  Technical rope work, permits and paperwork, patient packaging, atmospheric monitoring equipment, air sampling strategies, and strategies/tactics for successful emergency entry operations are addressed at this level.  NFPA standards outline that personnel trained to the operations level can perform confined space rescues if the following conditions are met:

  • All hazards are controlled or isolated   
  • Rescuer can see patient from entrance
  • Space can accommodate two rescuers, their equipment, and patient


Confined Space Technician

The Confined Space Operator course is required as a prerequsite before continuing to the level of Confined Space Technician.  Technician level training is appropriate for rescuers encountering widely variable confined space conditions where hazards haven't been identified, controlled, or isolated, and the internal configuration of the space is complex.  To address these demanding conditions, a technican course trains personnel for advanced rope work, pre-planning, site management, team leadership, resource management, and incident termination.



Contact our private and public course organizers if you have questions about the content of our training, or if you'd like to compare our training to a program offered by another provider.  For more information on booking into the right course for you, give us a call.


Feb 20-23

Wilderness First Responder “Bridge”

  • $549
  • Prince George, BC

Feb 20-23

Wilderness First Responder - Recertification

  • $549
  • Prince George, BC

Feb 23-27

Technical Rope Rescue - Operator

  • $845
  • North Vancouver, BC

Feb 23-24

Ice Rescue Technician

  • $449
  • Kamloops, BC
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Dorin Constantin, Firefighter (2014 Raven Flood Legacy Bursary Recipient)
High River Fire Department

The SRT1 course was fantastic, and the instructors were amazing! Again, thank you for the bursary you offered me.


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