PSM Implementation Process

1. This was a statement given by a worker of ABC Company.“I came to work here almost 15 years ago. This was a good job with
good pay and benefits. I’ve seen a lot of change, some for the better, some worse. I just heard a supervisor talking about new challenges for our plant from OSHA enforcement of the Process Safety Management Standard”. He said there is really no need for more government regulation or enforcement, that this will just hurt our industry. He questioned the PSM Standard, asking why it was so important and why – years after it was issued – OSHA is increasing its attention to PSM. As a Safety, Health and Environment (SHE) Manager, discuss in detail on how PSM should be implemented in the company and how to get employees engaged in PSM.

2. Select ONE PHA method and discuss in detail on how the chosen PHA method could improve a company’s approach in managing or mitigating high risk operations to an ALARP (As Low as Reasonably  Practicable). Include the justification of the PHA method in the answer.

Process Safety Management (PSM) System

The first stage of implementing any new management system is developing a customized design. This is an important step to start with for a successful implementation.  The company must be keen on deciding which process safety management (PSM) system to use. Certain factors ought to be put into consideration while selecting the PSM framework. They include; flexibility with the functions of the company’s divisions, the ability to integrate into the existing management systems, programs in competing companies, adaptability with the programs of the company, the design of the system, and compliance of the PSM with the set standards (Shariff, Aziz, & Majid, 2016).

After considering all the above factors in selecting the PSM system, the implementation process starts with analyzing the Gaps of the PSM system selected. After Gap analysis, the next important step is conducting a workshop with the various levels of the organization to ensure that all the employees are conversant with it. This is followed by developing a customized PSM manual for the company. The company should have a specific team dealing with issues around the PSM; therefore, this team can be formed at this stage.

The system is then implemented, including training the selected team on each element and integrating it into the plant system.  This team then develops formats and templates for the new system, then training on the various techniques of PHA, and then the PSM is propagated through newsletters. After all, this is done, compliance is assessed in the real work, improvement areas are identified, and support is created for external audits.

Hazard and Operability Study (HAZOP)

There are various methods of process hazard analysis (PHA) that are used to identify risk areas in an operating system. This paper will focus on one method called the hazard and operability study (HAZOP) (MOHAMMADFAM, SAJEDI, MAHMOUDI, & MOHAMMADFAM, 2012).  This is an organized evaluation of a complex plant system to identify problems that may lead to risky situations for the employees and company equipment. This process is aimed at evaluating the engineering design and picking out possible threat areas that may not have otherwise been noticed for improvement.

It subdivides the complex plant system into simpler sections called nodes for easier analysis. The process is important in helping mitigate the company’s possible risks as it identifies them before they happen and causes losses. Through the HAZOP method, the company can overcome workplace hazards and risks and manage them to the lowest possible risk level, also referred to as low as reasonably practical (ALARP). The justification behind choosing this method is that it is a preventive method; hence it helps the company from workplace health and safety issues.

References

MOHAMMADFAM, I., SAJEDI, A., MAHMOUDI, S., & MOHAMMADFAM, F. (2012). Application of Hazard and Operability Study (HAZOP) in Evaluation of Health, Safety, and Environmental (HSE) Hazards. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF OCCUPATIONAL HYGIENE Vol. 4 No. 2, 17-20.

Shariff, A. M., Aziz, H. A., & Majid, N. D. (2016). Way forward in Process Safety Management (PSM) for effective implementation in process industries. Current Opinion in Chemical Engineering 14, 56–60.

 

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