Process Safety

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Process Safety Boot Camp

Face-to-Face Course
Offered in North America, this intensive and highly interactive 4-day course trains chemical engineers in the fundamentals of Process Safety. Taught...

Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS)

CCPS was established in 1985 to focus on engineering and management practices that can prevent and mitigate catastrophic accidents involving release of hazardous materials. CCPS is supported by sponsors in the chemical and hydrocarbon process industries and active worldwide via conferences, books, databases, education, research, and more.

Practical Compliance with the EPA Risk Management Program: A CCPS Concept Book

July, 2009
At last, smaller chemical processing operations have truly easy access to process safety and risk management programs tailored to meet their needs. Written as a "how to" book with checklists, it offers sufficient information for managers of facilities with small chemical operations to implement a...

Reshaping Process Safety Regulations

March
2002
Safety
Walter L. Frank
Changes to OSHA's PSM rule and EPA's RMP programs are underway, due to pressures from various groups and the need for greater security.

Developing Safety Standard for Pilot Plants

October
2006
Safety
Richard P. Palluzi
Safety standards can significantly improve pilot plant safety and increase efficiency. This article addresses many of the issues involved in developing, deploying and using such standards.

Six Steps to Effectively Update and Revalidate PHAs

January
2001
Safety
David K. Whittle, Kevin  Smith
Process hazard analyses must be revamped — or redone from scratch — every five years by law. Following the guidance given here will facilitate this effort.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Good Housekeeping for Safety

December
2012
Process Safety Beacon
A fire started in a fiber trash drum in a process building. The drum contained solder flux and paste, welding debris, general trash, and oil-soaked rags. It had not been emptied for a long time. The ignition source may have been hot welding debris...

Before OSHA Comes Knocking ...

March
2009
Safety
Daniel Steinway
The OSHA Process Safety Management National Emphasis Program will soon apply to the chemical industry, targeting compliance with safety standards associated with chemical hazards.

CEP: Commentary - Working Together to Put CFATS Back on Track

November
2012
Commentary
Bill Allmond
More than five years ago, Congress enacted the most robust and comprehensive chemical security regulatory program to date. The regulation — the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) — protects facilities against attack without impairing...

CEP: Spotlight on Safety - LOPA — A Valuable Risk-Reduction Tool

November
2012
Spotlight on Safety
John F. Murphy, P.E.
Layer of protection analysis (LOPA) is a simplified process risk-assessment technique that uses order-of-magnitude estimates for initiating events, consequence severity, and likelihood of failure of independent protection layers (IPLs) to approximate the risk of a scenario. It is generally used after a process hazard analysis (PHA) team has identified a hazard scenario that requires further analysis to ensure the adequacy of the safeguards that exist or are being proposed.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Double Block and Bleed

March
2012
Process Safety Beacon
The December 2011 Beacon described an incident where a missing plug on a vent line resulted in a flammable material leak that caught fire, causing a fatality. That incident reminded us of the importance of caps and plugs on process vent lines and...

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Manage Temporary Changes

October
2012
Process Safety Beacon
A filter on the suction of a pump frequently plugged. Because of this, the pressure needed to be monitored, both in the field and at the control panel. To minimize installation time for a pressure transmitter, it was decided to install a tap on the...

Handle Corrosive Acids and Caustics Safely

September
2012
Safety
Richard W. Prugh, P.E., CSP
Understand the corrosivity hazards of acids and caustics, and follow these guidelines to manage those hazards through inherently safer design, engineering and administrative controls, and personal protective equipment.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - What Can I do? I’m Just the Operator.

September
2012
Process Safety Beacon
A frequent comment from workers is, “What can I do to improve the safety of our processes? I am just the operator (or technician, mechanic, etc.). I just turn valves, operate the equipment, take samples, turn wrenches, adjust the equipment.” It is...

Guidelines for Auditing Process Safety Management Systems, 2nd Edition

February, 2011
This book discusses the fundamental skills, techniques, and tools of auditing, and the characteristics of a good process safety management system. A variety of approaches are given so the reader can select the best methodology for a given audit. This book updates the original CCPS Auditing...

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Hot Work Hazards

August
2012
Process Safety Beacon
A contract welder and a foreman were repairing an agitator support on top of an atmospheric-pressure storage tank. The tank contained a polyvinyl fluoride slurry with a flammable concentration if vinyl fluoride in the vapor space. An explosion...

Use LOPA to Determine Protective System Requirements

February
2007
Safety
W. Kent Goddard
This article explains how to use layers of protection analysis (LOPA) to evaluate various process safeguards, determine if safety instrumented functions are required, and establish what safety integrity levels are needed to reduce risks to tolerable...

Addressing the Hazards of Data Omission from MSDSs

April
2005
Safety
James C. Mulligan
If certain chemicals lack physical hazards data, suppliers must be proactive to keep workers safe. Here’s how to determine dust flammability and reactivity data for inclusion on MSDSs.

Plant Security Remains a Moving Target

May
2008
News Feature
Cynthia F. Mascone
While chemical companies work toward complying with existing standards, legislators are poised to revise those very rules — with changes ranging from minor tweaking to major overhaul on the table.

Classifying Reactive Chemicals

March
2004
Safety
M. Sam Mannan, Sanjeev R. Saraf, William J. Rogers
This simple classification scheme can be used to characterize the thermal instability risks posed by reactive chemicals in a process.

Create Effective Process Safety Moments

May
2010
Safety
Deborah Luper
Process safety topics are underrepresented in safety communications. Here are ideas on how to convey your organization’s safety priorities in messages tailored to the audience.

Controlling Risk During Major Capital Projects

April
2009
Safety
William Bridges
Think of process safety management (PSM) as a project deliverable, and follow these best practices for scheduling and performing process hazard analyses (PHAs) and completing other PSM requirements during key phases of a major project.

Use Logic Diagrams to Analyze Failure Mechanisms

June
2005
Safety
Thiago Tinoco Pires
Here’s how to construct and apply continuous-value and single-value network diagrams, which can better represent system failure mechanisms than other logic diagrams.

Reliability for Safety Instrumented Systems

September
2004
Instrumentation
J. Patrick Williams
This article offers a detailed reliability-based methodology for determining the safety integrity level of instrumented systems by providing overpressure protection where arrangements of multiple pressure-relief valves are impractical to implement.

Will IST Stall CFATS Reauthorization?

August
2010
News Feature
Matthew McKeon-Slattery
Debate over the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards continues to revolve around whether manufacturers and processors will be required to incorporate inherently safer technology into their security plans.

Disinfect with Sodium Hypochlorite

March
2003
Safety
Anton G. Callery
Sodium hypochlorite is an effective alternative to chlorine gas. Follow these guidelines for its safe use.

Conduct an Effective Incident Investigation

September
2004
Safety
Frederick T. Dyke
Information that can reveal the root cause of an incident resides in many places — within the plant or process unit, in control rooms and offices, and even in witnesses’ minds. Here’s how to find the data and conduct effective witness interviews.

Reduce Thermal Risk in Industrial Synthesis

October
2001
Safety
Richard C. Wedlich 
Knowing the safe operating conditions for a reaction allows us to select appropriate safety measures and thereby lower both the likelihood and the severity of a thermal runaway.

Properly Purge and Inert Storage Vessels

February
2001
Safety
George R. Kinsley Jr.
Inert gases are used to prevent fires and explosions in the vapor spaces of equipment. Correct selection of oxygen concentration and inert gas flow rate are critical to ensuring safety.

Tackling the Human Challenges of Facility Security

February
2006
Safety
Dennis A. Attwood, Bill Effron
The increased complexity of security systems may come at the expense of the user. Thus, they must be designed to match their operators' capabilities and limitations.

Consider Natural Hazards in Process Safety Management

July
2008
Safety
Frank F. Liserio Jr.
Incorporating hurricanes, earthquakes and other forces of nature into an integrated process safety management (PSM) program can enable you to effectively identify these hazards and manage the risks.

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