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process safety consulting

Independent Professional Advice

Our team of process safety specialists provides consulting advice and guidance that is confidential and independent of government oversight and vendor support. This advice and guidance is based on the authoritative publications of the Center for Chemical Process Safety, the National Fire Protection Association, the UK Health and Safety Executive, and other globally recognized Standards institutions and experts, and includes peer-reviewed journal articles and the broad experiences of our consultants.

The objectives of our consulting assistance are to:

  • Ensure compliance with legislated requirements for process safety, as a minimum standard.
  • Provide practical resolutions and alternatives for the equipment, systems, devices, and procedures for meeting the legislated requirements.
  • Suggest and recommend process improvements that provide safety beyond the minimum standards, as based on recognized and generally accepted good engineering practices. This may include the generation of global engineering standards.
  • Respond promptly for requests for consulting assistance, particularly following a process related incident, and to participate in investigations.
  • Provide leaders and subject matter experts for process hazards analysis teams, for all types of PHA methods.
  • Perform on-site tests where electrostatic phenomena are involved.
  • Recommend tests on materials where hazardous properties are needed, and interpret the results of the tests.
  • Provide litigation assistance and expert witness testimony in fields in which we have expertise.

Our consultants work on all sizes of projects from small and large, and we work closely to tailor our deliverables to your organization’s culture, safety management systems, and processes.

Our Approach

The first step in process safety consulting is obtaining information, particularly concerning the materials that are involved. This would include flammability or combustibility, reactivity (including instability and pyrophoricity), and toxicity. It is then important to know how these materials are (or were) used at the location of interest, whether in reactions, storage, transport, or physical operations such as mixing and drying.

In most cases, a visit to the site is important, to study the equipment, the methods that are used to prevent undesired events, and the local and surrounding environment. Also, face-to-face discussions with affected personnel are more likely to lead to revelation of previous incidents, near misses, and unanticipated behaviors of the materials involved.

Often, the consulting activity can lead to preliminary conclusions, as based on observations, discussions, and study of documents. Unless considerable further investigation of the properties of materials and the use of materials is needed, the preliminary results of the consulting activity can be presented to the client.
A product of the consulting activity usually is a draft report, for review by the client. Following the receipt of comments, a final peer reviewed report is then issued.

The primary objective in every case is to provide the client with independent and unbiased professional advice which addresses and evaluates the client’s concerns. A secondary objective is to provide the client with a “path forward” in terms of risk reduction, prevention of incident recurrence, testing of materials, further litigation assistance, personnel training, or other improvements, as related to the initial request for process safety consulting.