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The techniques used for hazard identification and risk assessment must be suitable and robust, and be based on accurate Process Safety Information.

HAZOP is perhaps the most widely used method to identify both hazards and operational problems in design, with a broad application across many sectors of industry. Normally applied to a new process or design, it questions the design intent by applying simple guidewords (e.g., no, less, more, reverse) to process parameters (e.g. pressure, flow, temperature etc.) in a structured and systematic manner. The output from a HAZOP is a clear understanding of the hazards and operability issues around a design.

Our HAZOP chairmen are all IChemE trained study leaders and are experienced in applying the technique across a wide range of industrial processes, at key stages in the project or plant lifecycle.

At HFL Consulting, we also use a formal HAZID technique for identifying hazards. This is much quicker and less resource intensive but is still recognised by Regulators as appropriate for review of existing processes and other operations. As with HAZOP, our tool applies guidewords, (e.g., overpressure, impact etc.) systematically to identify hazards and provides for risk assessment, since it considers the risks of the identified scenarios both before and after the installed risk reduction measures.

The output from the HAZID is a set of scenarios which are prioritised by risk, with the inherent safety, prevention, control and mitigation measures recorded to manage the risk in each case. This output can then be used to analyse scenarios and screen appropriately for potential further studies that may be required, for example, determination of the Representative Set of scenarios required in a COMAH safety report; determination of scenarios which rely on significant human intervention to manage risk and require further study using Task Analysis and Human Reliability Assessment (HRA); or determination of the required Safety Integrity Level (SIL) for a Safety Instrumented System (SIS) in a Layers of Protection Analysis (LOPA).

At the component level, we can also help you to carry out Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) and Failure Modes, Effects, and Criticality Analysis (FMECA) studies to identify potential failures and assess the resulting effects on the rest of the system. The output is usually a set of actions focussed on design modification, or more generally on inspection, testing and preventive maintenance. Studies can be carried out using a range of templates but we can provide our own FMEA/FMECA workbooks for recording results and actions.

All of the templates we provide can be used by you to maintain these studies as living documents to meet the expectations of the Regulators.

LOPA/SIL Determination

Human Factors