Dealing with the process safety “management gap”



The Process Industry has Corporate Safety Policies, codes of practice, skilled engineers and safety specialists and powerful techniques for Hazard Identification, Assessment and Control. Despite the above and a strong commitment to safety, accidents still occur. Many accidents appear to be due to “gaps” in the management systems rather than to failures of professional skills or to a lack of commitment. This paper will review the many stages in designing, constructing and operating a facility between the initial appraisal of a potential project and the final taking out of service of a facility. The “primary” and “secondary” safety checks will be described. The paper will give examples of gaps in management systems which have led to problems. Finally the paper will suggest ways in which these gaps can be minimized.