Process Safety


Process Safety Boot Camp

Public (classroom) 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.

Guidelines for Risk Based Process Safety

March, 2007
Guidelines for Risk Based Process Safety provides guidelines for industries that manufacture, consume, or handle chemicals, by focusing on new ways to design, correct, or improve process safety management practices.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - What Is the Process Risk?

Process Safety Beacon
The worst process incident that can happen in your plant may not be the same as the highest process risk. Risk is a combination of how likely an incident is and how bad the consequences could be. The process incident in your plant with the worst consequences may be very unlikely to occur. Other less-severe incidents may be more likely, making the risk of these events higher than the incident with the worst consequences. You should be aware of all process risks in your plant, and your role in managing all of them.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Ignition Sources

Process Safety Beacon
The best way to prevent fires and flammable vapor explosions, either inside or outside process piping and equipment, is to avoid creating a flammable mixture. However, we must also recognize that our equipment and operating procedures can fail and a...

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Persistence – Good or Bad?

Process Safety Beacon
Some process safety incidents have occurred because operating personnel failed to recognize that a process was not responding as expected. They attempted to keep a process in operation by deviating from standard procedures, or put themselves in danger by attempting to correct an out-of-control process condition rather than evacuating.

(Chinese) Guidelines for Risk Based Process Safety

August, 2013

(Chinese) Guidelines for the Management of Change for Process Safety

January, 2013

(Chinese) Layer of Protection Analysis: Simplified Process Risk Assessment

May, 2010

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Major Spills and Environmental Incidents

Process Safety Beacon
We may think of process safety incidents as fires, explosions, and immediate injuries from exposure to toxic, corrosive, or otherwise hazardous materials. However, major spills of hazardous materials, especially into rivers or other bodies of water, are also process safety incidents. They have the potential to impact large numbers of people, including people far away from your plant.

CEP: Spotlight on Safety - Normalization of Deviation — Identify It, Correct It, Prevent It

Spotlight on Safety
Louisa Nara
Whether we are talking about occupational safety or process safety, normalizing a deviation can result in unsafe practices, conditions, and operations. Getting comfortable with and accepting these deviations can cause a shift in our perception of what is safe. Why does this matter? Moving the target for safe operating limits and tolerating the higher risk s associated with doing so can ultimately lead to a catastrophic incident.

Inherently Safer Chemical Processes: A Life Cycle Approach, 2nd Edition

December, 2008
Inherently Safer Chemical Processes presents a holistic approach to making the development, manufacture, and use of chemicals safer. It discusses strategies for substituting more benign chemicals at the development stage, minimizing risk in the transportation of chemicals, using safer processing...

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Are We Reliving Past Incidents?

Process Safety Beacon
The short answer to this questions is YES. In 1993, Trevor Kletz, who passed away on Oct. 31, 2013, at the age of 91, wrote a book titled Lessons from Disaster: How Organizations Have No Memory and Accidents Recur. Twenty years later, we still fail to learn from accidents, and we repeat them.

Protect Your Process with the Proper Flame Arresters

Michael Davies, Thomas Heidermann
A flame arrester may be installed to keep an external flame out of a tank or vessel or to ensure that a flame burning within a pipeline does not propagate to other equipment. Use the information presented here to determine what type of device is appropriate for your application.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Hazards of Strong Oxidizers

Process Safety Beacon
A worker was asked to move two open-top 5-gal pails containing aqueous sodium permanganate solution from one location to another. When he picked up the pails, the contents of one of them erupted, spraying him with the solution. Sodium permanganate is a strong oxidizer, and the splashed material set the worker’s clothing on fire. His injuries required hospital treatment.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Holiday Operations

Process Safety Beacon
Many plants shut down or reduce operations during a holiday period. Equipment may be in a non-standard condition while processes are on hold or shut down. Even though the plant is shut down, it is likely that hazardous materials are still present in storage tanks and process vessels. Equipment that is shut down may be opened for inspection or maintenance. Some plants continue to operate during a holiday but with reduced staff, delaying less-critical activities.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Electrical Equipment in Hazardous Areas

Process Safety Beacon
One hundred years ago, on Oct. 14, 1913, the Senghenydd Colliery in Glamorgan, South Wales, exploded, resulting in 439 fatalities. This was the worst coal mine disaster in the history of the U.K. The incident is believed to have been started by...

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Air Power

Process Safety Beacon
Air is always all around us, and the oxygen it contains is necessary for life. But, compressed air (or any other compressed gas) contains a lot of energy and can cause major damage if a vessel or pipe fails.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Can a Water Pump Explode?

Process Safety Beacon
The answer must be yes, or we would not have a Beacon on this subject. The centrifugal pumps in the pictures are all water pumps that exploded. The explosions did not occur because of any contamination or chemical reaction with something that was...

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Remembering Piper Alpha

Process Safety Beacon
This month marks the 25th anniversary of the Piper Alpha offshore oil platform disaster in the North Sea approximately 110 miles (180 km) from Aberdeen, Scotland. On July 6, 1988, a series of catastrophic explosions and fires destroyed the platform...

Guidelines for Engineering Design for Process Safety, 2nd Edition

April, 2012
The book focuses on process safety issues in the design of chemical, petrochemical, and hydrocarbon processing facilities. It discusses how to select designs that can prevent or mitigate the release of flammable or toxic materials, which could lead to a fire, explosion, or environmental damage.

Guidelines for Acquisition Evaluation and Post Merger Integration

June, 2010
It is crucial for process safety professionals to be aware of best practices for post merger integration at any level. A compilation of industry best practices from both technical and financial perspectives, this book provides a single reference that addresses acquisitions and merger integration...

Guidelines for Developing Quantitative Safety Risk Criteria

August, 2009
Written by a committee of safety professionals, this book creates a foundation document for the development and application of risk tolerance criteria. Helps safety managers evaluate the frequency, severity and consequence of human injury Includes examples of risk tolerance criteria used by NASA,...

Continuous Monitoring for Hazardous Material Releases

March, 2009
Whether occurring accidentally or through acts of terrorism, catastrophic chemical releases must be identified early in order to mitigate their consequences. Continuous sensor monitoring can detect catastrophic chemical releases early enough to curb extreme amounts of damage. In several notable...

Incidents That Define Process Safety

March, 2008
Incidents That Define Process Safety describes approximately fifty incidents that have had a significant impact on the chemical and refining industries' approaches to modern process safety. Events are described in detail so readers get a fundamental understanding of the root causes, the...

Guidelines for Safe and Reliable Instrumented Protective Systems

April, 2007
This book explains the decision-making processes for the management of instrumented protective systems (IPS) throughout a project's life cycle. It uses the new IEC 61511 standard as a basis for the work processes used to achieve safe and reliable process operation. By walking the reader through a...

Human Factors Methods for Improving Performance in the Process Industries

December, 2006
Human Factors Methods for Improving Performance in the Process Industries provides guidance for managers and plant engineering staff on specific, practical techniques and tools for addressing forty different human factors issues impacting process safety. Human factors incidents can result in injury...

Chemical Reactivity Hazard Training CD-ROM

May, 2006
The Chemical Reactivity Hazards CD is a self-paced teaching tool intended to teach people how to recognize and manage reactive chemical hazards. It provides an introduction to the topic and many online links to additional resources. The CD has three main objectives: Introduce reactive chemical...

Guidelines for Safe Handling of Powders and Bulk Solids

November, 2004
Powders and bulk solids, handled widely in the chemical, pharmaceutical, agriculture, smelting, and other industries present unique fire, explosion, and toxicity hazards. Indeed, substances which are practically inert in consolidated form may become quite hazardous when converted to powders and...

Guidelines for Preventing Human Error in Process Safety

August, 2004
Almost all the major accident investigations--Texas City, Piper Alpha, the Phillips 66 explosion, Feyzin, Mexico City--show human error as the principal cause, either in design, operations, maintenance, or the management of safety. This book provides practical advice that can substantially reduce...

Guidelines for Facility Siting and Layout

August, 2003
A resource for individuals responsible for siting decisions, this guidelines book covers siting and layout of process plants, including both new and expanding facilities. This book provides comprehensive guidelines in selecting a site, recognizing and assessing long-term risks, and the optimal lay...

Understanding Explosions

July, 2003
There are many different types of explosions, each with its own complex mechanism. Understanding explosions is important in preventing them. This reference provides valuable information on explosions for everyone involved in the operation, design, maintenance, and management of chemical processes,...

Guidelines for Investigating Chemical Process Incidents, 2nd Edition

March, 2003
This book provides a valuable reference tool for technical and management personnel who lead or are a part of incident investigation teams. This second edition focuses on investigating process-related incidents with real or potential catastrophic consequences. It presents on-the-job information,...

Essential Practices for Managing Chemical Reactivity Hazards

March, 2003
In its recent investigation of chemical reactivity accidents, the US Chemical Safety Board noted a gap in technical guidance and regulatory coverage. This volume closes the gap in technical guidance, helping small and large companies alike identify, address, and manage chemical reactivity hazards...

Deflagration and Detonation Flame Arresters

May, 2002
Designed for chemical engineers and other technical personnel involved in the design, operation, and maintenance of facilities and equipment where deflagration and detonation flame arresters (DDFAs) may be required, this book fosters effective application and operation of DDFAs through treatment of...

Wind Flow and Vapor Cloud Dispersion at Industrial and Urban Sites

April, 2002
A key component of risk reduction is reducing the potential consequences that could result from toxic or flammable releases. The science of vapor cloud dispersion has advanced significantly in recent years, but one of the long-standing challenges has been in accounting for dispersion around...

Layer of Protection Analysis: Simplified Process Risk Assessment

October, 2001
Layer of protection analysis (LOPA) is a recently developed, simplified method of risk assessment that provides the much-needed middle ground between a qualitative process hazard analysis and a traditional, expensive quantitative risk analysis. Beginning with an identified accident scenario, LOPA...

Making EHS an Integral Part of Process Design

June, 2001
This book presents an approach—termed MERITT (Maximizing EHS Returns by Integrating Tools and Talents)—for enhancing process development through better integration of environmental, health, and safety evaluations. It draws upon critical components of inherent safety, pollution prevention, green...

Revalidating Process Hazard Analyses

February, 2001
The foundation of any successful process safety program is a current set of process hazard analyses (PHAs) for each of its processes. Revalidating PHAs to keep them up to date and applicable is a must. This book is derived from the experience of many companies in the chemical and hydrocarbon...

Guidelines for Process Safety in Outsourced Manufacturing Operations

September, 2000
In today’s competitive economy, companies often augment in-house production by outsourcing chemical reaction processes and distillation, drying, formulating, blending, and packaging operations. While most of these tolling, or contracted manufacturing services, proceed without incident, recent major...

Guidelines for Process Safety in Batch Reaction Systems

September, 1999
Batch reaction systems pose unique challenges to process safety managers because they do not operate in a steady state. The sequence of processing steps, and frequent start-ups and shutdowns, increase the possibility of human errors and equipment failures. And, since batch plants are often designed...

Avoiding Static Ignition Hazards in Chemical Operations

September, 1999
Written by Laurence Britton, who has over 20 years' experience in the fields of static ignition and process fire and explosion hazards research, this resource addresses an area not extensively covered in process safety standards or literature: understanding and reducing potential hazards associated...

Estimating the Flammable Mass of a Vapor Cloud

July, 1999
This CCPS Concept book shows designers and operators of chemical facilities how to realistically estimate the flammable mass in a cloud of accidentally released material that is capable of igniting. It provides information on industry experience with flammable vapor clouds, basic concepts of fires...

Guidelines for Design Solutions for Process Equipment Failures

August, 1998
While there is no "perfect" solution or absolute zero risk, engineering design can significantly reduce risk potential in the CPI. In Guidelines for Design Solutions to Process Equipment Failures, industry experts offer their broad experience in identifying numerous solutions to the more common...

Guidelines for Safe Warehousing of Chemicals

June, 1998
A comprehensive understanding of the potential dangers inherent in warehousing chemicals is the first step in managing the associated risks. Written by industry professionals for warehouse operators, designers, and all who are concerned with the safe warehousing of chemicals, this book offers a...

Guidelines for Pressure Relief and Effluent Handling Systems

March, 1998
Current industry, government and public emphasis on containment of hazardous materials makes it essential for each plant to reduce and control accidental releases to the atmosphere. Guidelines for Pressure Relief and Effluent Handling Systems meets the need for information on selecting and sizing...

Electrostatic Ignitions of Fires and Explosions

July, 1997
Tom Pratt, a long-time process safety practitioner and lecturer in electrostatic safety, wrote this book to educate industry in the basics of electrostatics. It offers a selected collection of information designed to give readers the tools they need to examine the hazard potential of common...

Guidelines for Use of Vapor Cloud Dispersion Models, 2nd Edition

December, 1996
The second edition of this essential reference updates and combines two earlier titles to capture the many technological advances for predicting the "footprint" of a vapor cloud release. Cited by EPA in its 1996 document, "Off-Site Consequence Analysis Guidance," the aim of the book is to encourage...

Contractor and Client Relations to Assure Process Safety

December, 1996
Written and edited by engineering contractors and industry project/maintenance managers as an easy-to-use guide for other industry professionals, this book identifies important process safety issues in the contractor-client relationship,which are not addressed by other groups and publications...

Guidelines for Writing Effective Operating and Maintenance Procedures

May, 1996
The EPA investigation of a 1994 chemical plant tragedy concluded that "the explosion resulted from a lack of written safe operating procedures…" While good written procedures can't guarantee zero accidents, they can reduce the number of accidents caused by human error. This new book shows how to...

Guidelines for Safe Storage and Handling of Reactive Materials

September, 1995
With new and growing interest in dealing with the hazards of reactive chemicals, this book offers guidelines that can significantly reduce the risk or mitigate the severity of accidents associated with storing and handling reactive materials. Necessary elements of a reliable system to prevent...

Guidelines for Technical Planning for On-Site Emergencies

June, 1995
Prevention, preparedness, response and recovery--the key components of emergency planning--form the major sections of this work. The book first describes PSM (Process Safety Management) as the key to prevention, then goes on to consider the main features of a preparedness program, including...

Guidelines for Process Safety Documentation

April, 1995
The process industry has developed integrated process safety management programs to reduce or eliminate incidents and major consequences, such as injury, loss of life, property damage, environmental harm, and business interruption. Good documentation practices are a crucial part of retaining past...

Guidelines for Process Safety Fundamentals in General Plant Operations

April, 1995
At last, a book that covers safety procedures and standards with information that is rarely available outside of proprietary materials. A comprehensive source for basic and essential operations and procedures in use in any facility, the book offers chemical operators and first line supervisors...

Guidelines for Safe Process Operations and Maintenance

March, 1995
First-line managers have to maintain the integrity of facilities, control manufacturing processes, and handle unusual or emergency situations, as well as respond to the pressures of production demand. On a daily basis, they are closest to the operating personnel who may be injured by a process...

Guidelines for Consequence Analysis of Chemical Releases

March, 1995
This Guidelines book provides technical information on how to conduct a consequence analysis to satisfy your company's needs and the EPA rules. It covers quantifying the size of a release, dispersion of vapor clouds to an endpoint concentration, outcomes for various types of explosions and fires,...

Tools for Making Acute Risk Decisions with Chemical Process Safety Applications

August, 1994
The complexity of today's risk decisions is well known. Beyond cost and risk there are many other factors contributing to these decisions, including type of risk (such as human injury or fatality), the economic impact on the local community, profitability, availability of capital, alternatives for...

Guidelines for Implementing Process Safety Management Systems

April, 1994
The causes of catastrophic accidents in the process industries, now recognized as complex and interrelated, need to be matched by multi-faceted technical management systems. These principles apply to companies of any size and to a full range of industries beyond the chemical industry, such as pulp...

Guidelines for Safe Automation of Chemical Processes

October, 1993
Increased automation reduces the potential for operator error, but introduces the possibility of new types of errors in design and maintenance. This book provides designers and operators of chemical process facilities with a general philosophy and approach to safe automation, including independent...

Guidelines for Vapor Release Mitigation

April, 1988
Guidelines for Vapor Release Mitigation is a survey of current industrial practice for controlling accidental releases of hazardous vapors and preventing their escape from the source area.

CEP: Process Safety Beacon - Why Can't I Open that Valve?

Process Safety Beacon
In April 2004, an explosion and fire at a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plant killed five people and severely injured three others. The explosion and fire destroyed most of the reactor building and an adjacent warehouse. Because smoke from the fire drifted...


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