(81e) To Err Is Human: Mitigating the Hazards of Dryer Switching Operations

Authors: 
Fox, R. D., LyondellBasell
To Err is Human: Mitigating the Hazards of Dryer Switching Operations

 

Author

 

Rob D. Fox, Equistar Chemicals, LP

Abstract:

Within the chemical process industries regenerable dryer systems have long been used to remove moisture and contaminants from process streams. The design and optimization of these mature technologies is well understood. In these systems, limited run lengths lead to frequent regenerations and it is during the period of transition from one operating mode to another that there is an increased likelihood of a production upset or process safety event to occur if appropriate mitigation steps are not taken. This effect is further amplified by the high level of interaction between operators and the process during switching operations, which may result in higher risks for these activities than previously identified. This paper will explore several of the higher consequence hazards associated with switching process dryers, touch on the frequency of operator error, and provide risk mitigation strategies for dryers with both automated and manual valves.

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