E&P facilities: Using risk-based process safety applications

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Courtesy of ABS Consulting

Process safety and major accident prevention practices for offshore exploration and production (E&P) facilities vary somewhat around the globe. In the United Kingdom, the Safety Case is “king.” Elsewhere, quantitative risk analysis (QRA) is widely used during the design process to ensure that fire and explosion risk areas are identified and either inherently safer measures are integrated into the design or appropriate “life-cycle managed” safety critical elements are employed during operation to manage residual process safety risks. Embedded within both the safety case and any underlying QRA is a presumption that appropriate management systems are employed to nurture the equipment throughout its operating lifetime to ensure stable risks.

Formal safety management systems have been in place in some companies for many years. To promote process safety management (PSM) excellence and continuous improvement throughout industry, in 2007 the Center for Chemical Process Safety created “Guidelines for Risk-Based Process Safety” (RBPS) as the framework for the next generation of PSM. ABS Consulting wrote this guideline for CCPS, which was primarily aimed at managing process safety for downstream facilities. In 2008, ABS Consulting adapted the RBPS framework for use in the unique circumstances of the offshore environment.

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