Social HAZOP At Oil Refine Industry

  • Type:
    Conference Presentation
  • Conference Type:
    AIChE Spring Meeting and Global Congress on Process Safety
  • Presentation Date:
    April 2, 2012
  • Skill Level:
  • PDHs:

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Maintenance of process safety in the industry several tools are used such as Risk Analysis, Failure mode and events Analysis (FMEA), a Hazard operability analysis (HAZOP), Quantitative Risk Analysis (QRA), and Mapping Risk. Each tool or technique, if used at the right time can prevent hazards to becoming accidents through design improvements. The actions recommended could be in the management area to avoid any flaw in the procedure, or may be in the area of systems installing auxiliary instruments to signal or automatically act preventing the onset of failure.

In the design of chemical processes is important to specify equipment and accessories to ensure that the product does not leak to the external environment. The intrinsic safety of the equipment design is aided if the actions of the operation are kept within reasonable standards do not change the process variables, basis for setting safety limits for equipment and auxiliary systems of utilities in the safety area.

The Techinical HAZOP

The HAZOP allows for a discussion by specialists together in a meeting, where, depending on the type of equipment, type of instrument or type of activity, the specialties vary in quantity and type. A good discussion is made in the HAZOP on the controls required for operability of industrial plants and also including manual controls and operations that depend on human surveillance in the field and on the panel. The failure analysis indicated by the HAZOP discusses human factors lightly considering that the man may fail on the procedure or the perception of the alarm indicating that the best options for action are reviewing procedures, training and automation. So do not discuss aspects related to cognitive processing and the commitment of the operator in carrying out its task, this is a limitation of the HAZOP process in operation which, as of this moment is dubbed as HAZOP technician.

The Human Factor

Worker is considered by the resilience engineering the most important factor of the process and can, through their creativity to keep operating systems although the automatic control instruments are not working. So when the employee is commitment to the goal of the task makes it possible to obtain for maintaining personal and environmental safety, thus reducing the risk of process and operational risks.

Social HAZOP Steps

(1) Establish the expertise to make up the Social HAZOP. In this case it is understood that the social and human areas participate together with the engineering and operation in the HAZOP study. (2) Technical and Social Integration HAZOP. The Social HAZOP is started after the identification of hazards of equipment and processes and their discussion, ie, after completion of the Technical HAZOP. (3) Establish social nodes. People involved in the maintenance of the systems considered critical by the Technical HAZOP will form social nodes, here, the reason of Social HAZOP study. (4) Analysis of human and social factors to trigger Social HAZOP study - Establishing standards for the analysis. Factors that may cause human error are classified as sufficient level of competence, reliability, management and contractors, appropriate organizational environment, appropriate technology, quality, psychological staff, and planning and carrying out the task properly. For each of these types of factors are established criteria is nothing for the HAZOP study. For example, the types of human factor named as psychological quality are discussed: perception, attention, memory, and mental map for decision. (5) Analysis of human and social factors to trigger Social HAZOP study - Measuring the quality of qualitative socio-human team to compare with the standards. The process of multidisciplinary discussion and then to tie criteria to measure learning is to a team of Social HAZOP, participates in the operation together with the medical or psychologist of the plant resulting in vision rich multidisciplinary analysis of the consequences. (6) Decide on the HAZOP items ​​. The decision on the items to be studied and compared and there may be revisions in the way, so the analysis of the impact of inappropriate actions taken by the man in the task can change the opinion of the experts present. (7) Analysis of the deviations of social processes. This analysis involves actions in the social area and also in the technical area, reviewing the recommendations in many points defined in the Technical HAZOP. (8) Recommendations of the Social HAZOP. As already stated above, the type of recommendation or corrective action or preventive action in case of a Social HAZOP can confirm items have usually suggested by the HAZOP and technical, training needs, review of standards, review signs that indicate the failure process , control and automation for the operation of equipment. On the other hand, some recommendations of the HAZOP Social innovate with the following suggestions: changing communication tools, management action in case of very high stress, symbiotic relationship between the company and contracted allocation analysis as psychological quality person, and other recommendations.

An exercise to oil refine industry

For a situation of drainage boot decanter in the refining unit are presented key findings of the Technical HAZOP and then, the HAZOP Social is developed.


This tool includes criteria when human factors exceeds expectations for Intrinsic Safety Design and Safety of Industrial Processes and Social bringing the view that it is possible to override the chance of accident.

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