Friday, 31 October 2014

John+McKenna+PNG Comment

The big turnoff

John McKenna, Editor

Benchmarking for process safety management in high hazard industries

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London – Risk management specialist, HFL Risk Services, is joining forces with the Chemical Industries Association (CIA) to launch a new benchmarking study into Process Safety Management in the high hazard industries. The programme, which launches in November, will involve a select group of COMAH top-tier sites representative of a cross-section of the chemical industry.

The aim of the programme is to investigate how the sites are currently performing against published best practice guidelines, identify common areas of difficulty and target solutions.

Central to the exercise will be individual assessments of each site’s Asset Integrity Management Systems using HFL’s unique INSIGHT Lifecycle auditing and assessment tool.

Developed and perfected after over a decade of working closely with COMAH top tier sites, INSIGHT Lifecycle comprises 20 groups of questions designed to quickly and accurately pinpoint areas for improvement.

The questions are based on the CCPS guidance for risk based process safety and HSG65. This allows all Process Safety Management elements to be examined independently.

What makes this process different from any other, however, is the way it forces systematic review (including scoring and action setting) of the application of the guidance to the chemical process, the plant and equipment, the people and the procedural systems in place.

Following the auditing exercise, HFL will present the general findings of a review of the individual assessments and encourage discussion amongst the group. Julian Hought, Managing Director of HFL Risk Services commented “One of the key elements of ensuring low levels of risk at COMAH sites is to identify safety-critical elements and build a comprehensive and effective Process Safety Management system.

This benchmarking programme is designed to bring customers together to share experience and best practice across a wide cross-section of industry. Collectively they need to address all of the HSE’s hot topics, of which Process Safety Management is an integral part. I think that all parties involved will find the exercise illuminating.”

HFL Risk Services works with over 20% of the UK’s top tier COMAH sites and is currently seeking approval to become an National Skills Academy Process Industries approved PSM provider.

This study will feed into the development of new national Skills Academy Training Standards designed to underpin the key skills and competences for Process Safety Management across a wide variety of industry roles. These important Standards will support the demonstration of competence to the Regulatory Authorities.

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