Conducting Quality Process Safety Management Audits - Globally

  • Type:
    Conference Presentation
  • Conference Type:
    AIChE Spring Meeting and Global Congress on Process Safety
  • Presentation Date:
    April 3, 2019
  • Duration:
    30 minutes
  • Skill Level:
  • PDHs:

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Many countries around the globe has process safety regulations. Although these regulations focus on maintaining the safety of workers, the public, and the environment, their implementation is achieved in many different ways based on the country considered such as United States, Canada, European Union, United Kingdom, China, and India to mention the most known.

Global companies with operations in multiple countries, regions, and continents must conduct audits to comply with local legislation and regulations as well as to conform to in-house standards. Many countries require companies to conduct regular audits to review their safety management systems and make necessary corrections based on their findings.

When a company with global footprint focuses on compliance with multiple regulations and internal standards, they may divert their attention from the real purpose of safety management systems, i.e. keeping people safe. This may lead to increased compliance, but at the cost of overall safety.

Conducting performance-based audits is one means to avoid the problems resulting from an over-reliance on compliance. A focus on performance rather than compliance is also be a better approach to improve the bottom line of the corporation as well as to reach their process safety targets.

This paper will address this issue (compliance vs. performance based audits) from a global perspective with regard to what is effective and what is not when conducting process safety management audits for companies with widely distributed operations. Cultural differences among different geographic regions will be discussed especially with respect to process safety culture. Also, this paper will present specific activities that can be carried out during pre-audit, on-site visit and post-audit stages that can help to overcome such challenges. Each point will be illustrated with real-world experiences gained from auditing in multiple regions of the word.

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