What is Cold Work Permit, Precautions & Procedure

In this article, we are going to learn what is Cold work permit in PTW, what are cold work job hazards, the procedure to issue a permit, examples of Cold work permits etc.

In industries, the work permit system is a crucial part of safety. We learned about safety work permits and what are the types of permits in industries. Among those, the basic type of work permit is a Cold work permit.

What Is Cold Work Permit

General work also known as cold work permit is generally issued for a routine job but is not limited to that only. In this article, we are going to discuss the definition of cold work, precautions, examples, and procedures.

Before we get into the details, let’s start with a brief cold work permit definition.

What Is a Cold Work Permit?

Cold work permit also known as General work permit. A cold work permit is issued for the job which doesn’t include an ignition source, the job is not to be done above 1.9 meter in height, and doesn’t include any special hazard.

In short, a Cold work permit is issued for a job that doesn’t count under hot work, height work, or confined space, doesn’t include any special hazards, and is not categorized in any other type of work permit.

A cold work permit is an authorized document that is used in industries and sites to ensure the safety of workers while performing maintenance or rectification tasks on equipment, machinery, or lines. It serves as a formal authorization for workers to carry out their activities in potentially hazardous environments where there may be risks of injury or accidents.

The purpose of a cold work permit is to establish and enforce proper protocols and precautions to minimize the risk involved in the job. One important aspect of a cold work permit is conducting thorough risk assessments before allowing any work and take the necessary actions to reduce the risk involved into the job.

Examples of Cold work permit

As we know cold work includes jobs that are not considered as hot work, height work, confined space, excavation or any other special hazards. Here are some examples of job tagged a cold work permit.

  • Housekeeping in plant.
  • Electrical PM or Mechanical of pump, compressor or any other equipment.
  • Electrical connection of the pump and equipment.
  • Hose connection/valve box up (without line breaking).
  • Line erection or box up (Not at height).

What Does a Cold Work Permit Contain?

Now that we have learned what are the jobs covered under cold work permit and what are the examples of cold work permit. Now let us proceed with what a cold work permit contains and those are listed below.

  • Permit number
  • Description of the job, including equipment or instrument tag
  • Plant and location
  • Nature of work
  • Tool required in the job
  • Hazard consideration
  • Job/Equipment preparation and compliance/ Checklist
  • PPE’s and fire protection
  • Isolation / De-energization
  • Agency, department, and number of people working on the job
  • Date and time of issuance and permit validity
  • Permit issue sign, permit acceptor sign, Area operator sign
  • Permit Cancellation / Closure

There are the must-have points that are included in the cold work permit.

What is the hazard of a cold work permit?

Here is the list of hazards of a cold work job.

  • Cut /crush injury
  • Fall/trip/slip hazard
  • Ergonomic hazard
  • dust exposure
  • Electric shock

What are the precautions to be taken before issuance of a general work permit?

Prior to issuing any work permit in industries, risk assessment is performed which involves identifying potential hazards, evaluating their severity, and implementing appropriate control measures to mitigate risks.

By addressing these hazards proactively, accidents can be prevented and protect workers from harm. Another key element of a work permit is ensuring effective communication among all departments involved and tools box to be given by the permit issuer and acceptor to the workers who are deployed to perform the job.

Clear instructions should be provided about the specific tasks being carried out, relevant safety procedures, and required personal protective equipment (PPE), all working together towards maintaining a safe working environment.

What is the cold work permit procedure?

Here are the steps for issuing general work permits in industries.

Step 1 : First, the permit issuer will analyze the job and perform the job preparation such as line isolation, and equipment preparation i.e. purging, venting, flushing, etc.

Step 2 : Next is to prepare the permit according to the job and hand it over to the service department. The service department will verify the permit with the job, do a signature to accept the job, notify the technician for the job, and give the toolbox talk.

Step 3 : The technician, taking the permit reaches the job location where the area operator will verify the job, permit, and job preparation and do the signature to approve the permit.

Step 4 : Then the technicians are allowed to perform the maintenance job. After completion of the job, the job acceptor will verify the completion of the job, notify the area operator, and after verification by the area operator inform to permit issuer.

Step 5 : After job completion and verification, permit closer procedure is followed, and the service department hands over the completed job to the process department (permit issuer).

FAQ (Cold work permit)

1. What is an example of cold work activities?

Cold work examples are the work that doesn’t include ignition, work at height should be there and should not be in a confined space.

2. How many copies are there of a cold work permit?

A minimum of two copies are required in a cold work permit, the original copy is to be present with the person working on the location and should be displayed at the location and one carbon copy should be available with the issuer.

3. How long is a cold work permit valid?

Every occupational work safety permit is valid for that particular day only. Hence work permit is valid for 24 Hrs but it should be renewed in every shift starting.


Hope this detailed article on what is cold work permit and what are examples of cold work activities If you have any doubts related to the work-to-permit system or cold work then feel free to use the comment section. You can let us know if you want us to cover any other topic related to chemical engineering, work place safety or environment.

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Me - Founder of Chemical Tweak - A Chemical Engineer by profession and a part-time self-trained technology blogger.

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