Skip to Main Content

This information is provided free of charge by the Department of Industrial Relations from its web site at These regulations are for the convenience of the user and no representation or warranty is made that the information is current or accurate. See full disclaimer at
Subchapter 7. General Industry Safety Orders



Return to index
New query

§6120. Medical Control.

(a)(1) The employer shall retain a supervising physician who shall be available at all times while work is in progress in order to provide medical supervision of employees employed in compressed air work. The physician shall meet the physical qualifications of a compressed air worker and be willing to enter a pressurized environment.

(2) No employee shall be permitted to enter a compressed air environment until qualified by a physician in accordance with Section 6053.

(3) In the event an employee is absent from work for 10 or more consecutive days the employee shall be determined to be medically fit to resume compressed air work by the physician.

(4) Medical records shall be kept as required by applicable parts of Section 6058.

(b) Except when the air pressure in the working chamber is below 14 psig a medical chamber shall be established and maintained in immediate working order. The medical chamber shall:

(1) Have at least six feet of clear headroom at the center, and be subdivided into not less than two compartments.

(2) Be readily accessible to employees working under compressed air.

(3) Be kept ready for immediate use for at least five hours subsequent to the emergence of any employee from the working chamber.

(4) Be properly heated, lighted and ventilated.

(5) Be maintained in a sanitary condition.

(6) Have a non-shatterable port through which the occupant(s) may be kept under constant observation.

(7) Be constructed and tested in accordance with the Unfired Pressure Vessel Safety Orders; the medical lock shall be retested whenever it has been out of service for more than 1 year and whenever it is moved from one location to another.

(8) Be designed for a working pressure of 75 psig.

(9) Be equipped with internal controls which may be overridden by external controls.

(10) Be provided with air pressure gauges to show the air pressure within each compartment to observers inside and outside the medical chamber.

(11) Be equipped with a quick acting automatic sprinkler system.

(12) Be provided with oxygen lines and fittings leading into external tanks. The lines shall be fitted with check valves to prevent reverse flow.

(13) Be in constant charge of an attendant under the direct control of the supervising physician. The attendant shall be trained in the use of the chamber and suitably instructed regarding steps to be taken in the treatment of employees exhibiting symptoms compatible with a diagnosis of decompression sickness.

(14) Be located adjacent to an emergency medical facility. The emergency medical facility shall be equipped, as required by the retained physician, with approved demand type oxygen inhalation equipment.

(15) Be capable of being maintained at a temperature, in use, not to exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit nor be less than 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

(16) Be provided with sources of oil free air, both normal and emergency, which are capable of raising the air pressure in the chamber from 0 to 75 psig in five minutes.

(c) Identification badges shall be furnished to all employees, indicating that the wearer is a compressed air worker. The badge shall give employee's name, address of the medical chamber, the phone number of the licensed physician for the compressed air project, and contain instructions that in case of an emergency of unknown or doubtful cause or illness, the wearer shall be rushed to the medical chamber. The badge shall be worn at all times off the job as well as on the job.

Note: Authority cited: Section 142.3, Labor Code. Reference: Section 142.3, Labor Code.

1. New section filed 4-4-2006; operative 5-4-2006 (Register 2006, No. 14).

2. Amendment of subsection (a)(1), repealer of subsection (a)(3), subsection
renumbering and amendment of subsection (b)(13) filed 3-10-2010; operative 4-9-
2010 (Register 2010, No. 11).

Go BackGo Back to Article 154 Table of Contents