20 Aug 2014
We are pleased to let you have news from our collaborative partner IChemE.
An Update from IChemE
At the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) nothing is taken more seriously than process safety. In one of its busiest years ever, IChemE organised a major hazards conference, rolled-out a new professional process safety qualification, introduced a new range of training courses, established a strategic partnership to develop new products, and appointed the first director of the IChemE Safety Centre.
All of this has been achieved under the leadership and guidance of one of the UK's most senior safety experts and IChemE president for 2013/14, Judith Hackitt - chair of the GB Health and Safety Executive.
And 2015 is set to be another busy year driven by IChemE's desire to embed the highest possible standards of process safety throughout the whole of the chemical and process industries.
Even 99.9 per cent is not good enough, illustrated to great effect by Foster Wheeler's Frazier Mackay at Hazards 24, supported to SCI's Environment Health and Safety Group and held in Edinburgh in May 2014. He highlighted what a 0.1 per cent failure rate means across a range of industries and occupations:
- We would drink one glass of unsafe water each month
- There would be one unsafe plane landing each day at Heathrow Airport
- The UK postal service would lose 51,250 items of mail each day
- Doctors would drop 50 new born babies each day
- 500 incorrect surgical procedures would be performed each week
- 22,000 cheques would be deducted from the wrong bank account each day
- Your heart would miss 32,000 heart beats a year.
Most people would consider these numbers unacceptable. In the chemical and process industries the implications of failure are serious. So far, in 2014, IChemE has recorded approaching 300 process safety incidents killing around 650 people and injuring nearly 1,000 - that's the unacceptable price of a failure process safety.
But progress is being made to drive forward improvements in process safety.
IChemE: Improving Process Safety
IChemE and Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station in the US - which is home to the renowned Mary Kay O'Connor Process Safety Centre - signed an agreement paving the way for a suite of new process safety products and services.
Trish Kerin was appointed as director of the new IChemE Safety Centre (ISC) that will initially operate out of Melbourne, Australia.
A new standard and register of Professional Process Safety Engineers has been rolled out. Professional Process Safety Engineers are peer reviewed and positioned at the same professional level as Chartered Engineer and Professional Engineer.
The first 70 trailblazing Professional Process Safety Engineers are nearly in place around the world and will provide a core of registered engineers to mentor and support the growth of the standard over the next few years.
IChemE's new suite of training courses includes Establishing and Maintaining a Safety Culture, which seeks to embed process safety throughout an organisation, from the leadership downwards.
And the work of the European Process Safety Centre (EPSC), which is supported by IChemE and based at our head office in Rugby, is continuing to help continuous improvement in the discipline.
About Hazards 25
The next major opportunity to improve process safety is the Hazards 25 conference in Edinburgh on 13-15 May 2015. The event will provide a platform for sharing best practice and latest research on all aspects of chemical and process safety in Europe.
Please use the link below to find out more about Hazards 25 and register.