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Process Hazard Analysis )  
bulletWhat the regulation says:

(e)(1) The employer shall perform an initial process hazard analysis (hazard evaluation) on processes covered by this standard. The process hazard analysis shall be appropriate to the complexity of the process and shall identify, evaluate, and control the hazards involved in the process. Employers shall determine and document the priority order for conducting process hazard analyses based on a rationale which includes such considerations as extent of the process hazards, number of potentially affected employees, age of the process, and operating history of the process. The process hazard analysis shall be conducted as soon as possible, but not later than the following schedule:

(e)(1)(i) No less than 25 percent of the initial process hazards analyses shall be completed by May 26, 1994;

(e)(1)(ii) No less than 50 percent of the initial process hazards analyses shall be completed by May 26, 1995;

(e)(1)(iii) No less than 75 percent of the initial process hazards analyses shall be completed by May 26, 1996;

(e)(1)(iv) All initial process hazards analyses shall be completed by May 26, 1997.

(e)(1)(v) Process hazards analyses completed after May 26, 1987 which meet the requirements of this paragraph are acceptable as initial process hazards analyses. These process hazard analyses shall be updated and revalidated, based on their completion date, in accordance with paragraph (e)(6) of this standard.

(e)(2) The employer shall use one or more of the following methodologies that are appropriate to determine and evaluate the hazards of the process being analyzed.

(e)(2)(i) What-If;

(e)(2)(ii) Checklist;

(e)(2)(iii) What-If/Checklist;

(e)(2)(iv) Hazard and Operability Study (HAZOP);

(e)(2)(v) Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA);

(e)(2)(vi) Fault Tree Analysis; or

(e)(2)(vii) An appropriate equivalent methodology.

(e)(3) The process hazard analysis shall address:

(e)(3)(i) The hazards of the process;

(e)(3)(ii) The identification of any previous incident which had a likely potential for catastrophic consequences in the workplace;

(e)(3)(iii) Engineering and administrative controls applicable to the hazards and their interrelationships such as appropriate application of detection methodologies to provide early warning of releases. (Acceptable detection methods might include process monitoring and control instrumentation with alarms, and detection hardware such as hydrocarbon sensors.)

(e)(3)(iv) Consequences of failure of engineering and administrative controls;

(e)(3)(v) Facility siting;

(e)(3)(vi) Human factors; and

(e)(3)(vii) A qualitative evaluation of a range of the possible safety and health effects of failure of controls on employees in the workplace.

(e)(4) The process hazard analysis shall be performed by a team with expertise in engineering and process operations, and the team shall include at least one employee who has experience and knowledge specific to the process being evaluated. Also, one member of the team must be knowledgeable in the specific process hazard analysis methodology being used.

(e)(5) The employer shall establish a system to promptly address the team's findings and recommendations; assure that the recommendations are resolved in a timely manner and that the resolution is documented; document what actions are to be taken; complete actions as soon as possible; develop a written schedule of when these actions are to be completed; communicate the actions to operating, maintenance and other employees whose work assignments are in the process and who may be affected by the recommendations or actions.

(e)(6) At least every five (5) years after the completion of the initial process hazard analysis, the process hazard analysis shall be updated and revalidated by a team meeting the requirements in paragraph (e)(4) of this section, to assure that the process hazard analysis is consistent with the current process.

(e)(7) Employers shall retain process hazards analyses and updates or revalidations for each process covered by this section, as well as the documented resolution of recommendations described in paragraph (e)(5) of this section for the life of the process.


bulletWhat it means:
bullet A Process Hazard Analysis (PHA), sometimes called a process hazard evaluation, is one of the most important elements of the PSM program. A PHA is an organized and systematic effort to identify and analyze the significance of potential hazards associated with the processing or handling of an HHC. A PHA provides information which will assist employers and employees in making decisions for improving safety and reducing the consequences of unwanted or unplanned releases of an HHC. A PHA is directed toward analyzing potential causes and consequences of fires, explosions, releases of toxic or flammable chemicals and major spills of an HHC. The PHA focuses on equipment, instrumentation, utilities, human actions (routine and non-routine), and external factors that might impact the process. These considerations assist in determining the hazards and potential failure points or failure modes in a process.
bulletThe selection of a PHA methodology or technique will be influenced by many factors including the amount of existing knowledge about the process. Is it a process that has been operated for a long period of time with little or no innovation and extensive experience has been generated with its use? Or, is it a new process or one which has been changed frequently by the inclusion of innovative features? Also, the size and complexity of the process will influence the decision as to the appropriate PHA methodology to use. All PHA methodologies are subject to certain limitations. For example, the checklist methodology works well when the process is very stable and no changes are made, but it is not as effective when the process has undergone extensive change. The checklist may miss the most recent changes and consequently the changes would not be evaluated. Another limitation to be considered concerns the assumptions made by the team or analyst. The PHA is dependent on good judgment and the assumptions made during the study need to be documented and understood by the team and reviewer and kept for a future PHA.
bulletThe team conducting the PHA needs to understand the methodology that is going to be used. In the HHC industies the "what-if/checklist and "HAZOP" methodologies have proven effective and comprehensive. A PHA team can vary in size from two people to a number of people with varied operational and technical backgrounds. Some team members may only be a part of the team for a limited time. The team leader needs to be fully knowledgeable experienced in the proper implementation of the PHA what-if/checklist methodology and should be impartial in the evaluation. The other full or part time team members need to provide the team with expertise in areas such as process technology, process design, operating procedures and practices, including how the work is actually performed, alarms, emergency procedures, instrumentation, maintenance procedures,  including how the tasks are authorized, procurement of parts and supplies, safety and health, and any other relevant subject as the need dictates. At least one team member must be familiar with the process.
bulletThe ideal team will have an intimate knowledge of the standards, codes, specifications and regulations applicable to the HHC process. The selected team members need to be compatible and the team leader needs to be able to manage the team and the PHA study. The team needs to be able to work together while benefiting from the expertise of others on the team or outside the team, to resolve issues, and to forge a consensus on the findings of the study and the recommendations.
bulletSmall facilities which are covered by this rule, will often have processes that have less storage volume, less capacity, and less complicated than processes at a large facility. Therefore, OSHA would anticipate that the less complex methodologies would be used to meet the process hazard analysis criteria in the standard. These process hazard analyses can be done in less time and with a few people being involved. A less complex process generally means that less data, P&IDs, and process information is needed to perform a process hazard analysis.
bulletWhen the employer has a number of processes which require a PHA, the employer must set up a priority system of which PHA's to conduct first. A preliminary or gross hazard analysis may be useful in prioritizing the processes that the employer has determined are subject to coverage by the process safety management standard. Consideration should first be given to those processes with the potential of adversely affecting the largest number of employees. This prioritizing should consider the potential severity of an HHC release, the number of potentially affected employees, the operating history of the process such as the frequency of chemical releases, the age of the process and any other relevant factors. These factors would suggest a ranking order and would suggest either using a weighing factor system or a systematic ranking method. The use of a preliminary hazard analysis would assist an employer in determining which process should be of the highest priority and thereby the employer would obtain the greatest improvement in safety at the facility.


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