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A Step Change In Safety Management - An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated SafeSystem of Work (ISSoW)

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  1. 1. A Step Change InSafety Management An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Topics Ÿ Safer Safety Management Ÿ An Approach to Securing an Improved Safety System Ÿ Electronic ISSoW Systems Ÿ Industrial Sector Approaches Ÿ Adoption and Implementation Ÿ Synopsis Copyright: Engica Technology Systems Intenational © 2003
  2. 2. A STEP CHANGE IN SAFETY MANAGEMENTSafer SafetyManagementAll industries have issueswith safety, some morethan others and some whohave had regrettable andunpleasant experiences.Industrial organisations have the responsibility toadhere to regulations, retain records, mainta i n This short review looks at various aspects of safetystandards, and if concerned improve in house safety and software associated with work risk assessmentstandards. Under the umbrella of HSE directives, and permit to work (PTW) systems in the energyinitiatives and a number of industrial safety focus and chemical industries. Its scope is to explain howgroups there has been significant promotion of task an electronic software system can be used to assistrisk assessment with the aim to improve safety. Within the necessary processes. It also covers generalthe UK oil & gas sector there is also an alignment of aspects of implementation and the various issuesideas associated with permits and naming practices to associated with the adoption of software tools tostandardise certain core aspects. P a r t i c i p a n t s make a step change in safety management.demonstrate a positi v e p r o a c t i v e a t t i t u d e t oimplementing such standards but adoption timetablesare yet to be confirmed. Safety ImplicationsThe Energy operators have a number of additional Most people would regard safety from the point ofissues to handle influenced by international operation view of their own and colleagues well being andand rapid ownership and equity changes. The effects rightly so. There are howeve r o t h e r d r i v e sof increased asset disposal and acquisition, build and stemming from commercial and production issuesmaintain life cycle contracts, global expansion, ageing including insurance premiums, operational uptimeexperience, regional skills shortfalls, increased staff and environmental laws. The combin e dmobility and contract outsourcing to mention a few, all requirements are now prompting organisations tobring a strain on safety knowledge and local practice. seek and adopt more systematic approaches toThese effects must be count e r b a l a n c e d w i t h enhance existing methods.techniques not only to maintain levels of safety but tostrive to improve them. Safety processes with the rig h t d i s t r i b u t e d knowledge and correctly applied precautions willEngica hav e b e e n a c t i v e l y i n v o l v e d i n w o r k handle safety effectively, but this statement holdsmanagement techniques for over two decades and the key to the problem "distributed knowledge andover the past five years have made substa n t i a l correctly applied precautions". Each person ofteninvestment into a focused design and development relies upon measures ta k e n b y o t h e r t e a mgroup to construct an Integrated Safe System of Work members. If one reflects upon serious events in(ISSoW) software syste m . T h e p u r p o s e i s t o hindsight they all could have been avoided withconsolidate the ideas and initiatives derived from the appropriate precautions and controls. Lessonsvarious focus groups to support our existing and learned springs to mind. Managements k e yprospective clients. The Q4 Safety ISSoW system is objective should be to establish intrinsically safenow being launched into active duty having undergone methods with near zero risk tolerance, and getmajor verification and site acceptance trials to attain them working without bankrupting the organisationintrinsically safe certification. in the process. An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Page 1 of 8
  3. 3. A STEP CHANGE IN SAFETY MANAGEMENTAn Approach to Securing an Improved Safety SystemEngicas approach is not to assume that a single system with, say,preset permits will satisfy all organisations. It is recognised thatradical changes in many cases could cause more problems thansolutions. Staff in general are used to their existing paper basedsystems that have been derived over time within their organisation.What is beneficial in many cases is a step enhancement tostrengthen the process rather than radical change.This does not go against the grain One shoul d n o t i g n o r e t h a t Although many may think thatof standardising certain elements changing practices takes time. safety systems have al r e a d yof safety which has been done The sensible approach is a step been made electronic or have ansuccessfully in many aspects such by step philosophy to accumulate opinion that such systems do notas hazardous s u b s t a n c e s a major step change. improve the process, it should bedefinitions or lifting regulations. noted that this ar t i c l e i sFor example colour standards of The industrial organisations we discussing a more advanced andthe various permit and certificates deal with in safety management highly integrated safe system ofwould seem sensible in industrial range from power generation, oil work approach.sectors to help cross company & gas, chemical and pr o c e s sworking especially for contract based i n d u s t r i e s . T h i s h a s Such systems are now be i n gpersonnel. Another item could be allowed Engica to draw upon the adopte d i n t h e e n e r g y a n dt h e s t a n d a r di s a t i o n o f past and current practices in use proces s i n d u s t r i e s a n d w eauthorisation naming in each sector during o u r believe they will be c o m e D Enomenclature. These aspects rely research. It has presented us FACTO in the course of time. Noup o n g o v e r n m e n t a n d with the insight into sys t e m s doubt you will have opinions andorganisation forums to establish advancement. T h i s h a s a n d Engica welcome comment andcommon practices although it is continues to be done, by critical participation in r e l a t e d H S Eworth noting tha t e l e c t r o n i c analysis and by using the best are well positioned to methods from each sector. Ouradopt and impose such standards. research into task ri s k assessment and its approa c hIn man y c a s e s , i t i s t h e however has derived a methodapplication of current or slightly that f i t s a l l i n d u s t r i e s a n denhanced permit and certificate provides integration from bothform f o r m a t s w i t h i n a n e w work management and permitelectronic system that will gain aspects.the acceptance of use. An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Page 2 of 8
  4. 4. A STEP CHANGE IN SAFETY MANAGEMENTElectronic ISSoW SystemsAdvanced electronic permit to work(PTW) s y s t e m s a r e n o w b e i n gclassified as Integra t e d S a f eSystems of Work (ISSoW) and suchsystems have a d v a n c e d w e l lbeyond the t r a d i t i o n a l p r i n tcertificates forms m o d e o rindependent risk asse s s m e n tmodule.The Q4 ISSoW system for example combines all the Q4s design allows the integration of an existingelements of work flow, hazard mitigation and permit work systems into a seamless environment, forprocedural methods into a unified process supported example, work orders and work packs (sometimeswith relational intelligence. The safety controls and known as modules) are presented to the r i s kexecution activities are supported with intrinsically safe assessment process electronically bringing all of thecross check methods to add real value in improving the elements into a unified process in its preparation, execution and returnto service phases. The output is a safety work pack One of the counter arguments to electronic systemsdetailing the procedures and confirmation checks to is that a robotic electronic system could lead tomake it safe. disaster due to the use of provided information without due diligence. For example using a templateKnowledge based ISSoW process i n g o f s a f e t y that does not exactly detail the environmentalinformation such as risk assessments; plant isolations circumstances of the work. This of course canallied with lessons learnt provide safety engineers the happen in a paper based system, where peopletools to process permits and certificates in an informed photocopy a past risk assessment for use. In theand highly integrated manner. case of the Q4 system, the system either questions or requires a check statement on each element toA rule based flow process can be applied to the Q4 induce a rigorous process. In addition the systemISSoW based system; configured to each permit or groups each element in a fashion to give the bigcertificate type with authorisation signoffs. Each picture as well as the detail. For example isolations,process provides an audit trail, an approac h i n lifting and material substance hazards are accessibleprinciple to strengthen the s a f e t y c h e c k s a n d as a unit via the risk assessment. Finally on thisresponsibility awareness. The managed flow of say a aspect, in all safety matters it must be understoodtoolbox or pre-work check for examp l e c a n b e that it is the responsibility of the Author i s i n genforced by virtue of a signatory confirming its physical Authority (AA), Senior Authorised Person (SAP) orperformance and risk acceptability. equivalent to confirm its integrity and it is the responsibility of engineers to conform to the riskThe risk assessment process of Q4 brings all aspects assessment and permit scope. This applies equallyinto the assessment process; this may even include to paper or electronic system.other developed applications such as COSHH, MSDS,LOLER, ATEX, DSEAR as examples. Normally the result A major advantage to highl i g h t c o m e s f r o mcan be electronically glued to the main assessment procedural documents that are updated assumingusing Q4s connection technology o r i t c a n b e they are encapsulated in the ISSoW electronicreferenced. The risk assessment tree provides hazard system. Such changes will immediately be fed tocounter measures with precautions and controls for personnel within the appropriate domain of use. Thiseach element or step of work. A risk matrix can be in itself overcomes the problem of maintaining racksused on each hazard to classify the consequence and of hard copy procedural manuals and increases theestimated probability. chance that they will actually be read! An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Page 3 of 8
  5. 5. A STEP CHANGE IN SAFETY MANAGEMENTElectronic ISSoW SystemsPractical ISSoW Usage IssuesAssuming that a system has the necessary functionalityand processes, successful adoption depends on two keyfactors: - ease of use, this one we classify as natural useand the other is the speed of use."Speed of use is vital."Even the most functionally rich system if tediouslyslow will result in operators finding ways ofbypassing the system. After all a good system isabout providing information in order to give moretime to the consideration of the safety issues, riskassessment and precaution precision with regardto the tasks at hand, not just to a c t a s a nexecutive safe guard to litigation. The measureshould be at least equal if not quicker thanmanual methods."Natural use is important."Systems designed for rocket scientists are onlygood for rocket scientists. This does not meanthat a bit of training is not needed but it doesmean that the system provides an intuitive andconsistent interface at each stage or phase of thesafety assessment or permit assembly. Q4systems for example have been developed bystanding over the shoulders of safety engineersand watching experienced and novice users usethe system many times to refine its interface. Wedo not accept inco h e r e n c y b l a m i n g i t o ntechnology shortfalls. This has led in one of itskey features to represent on screen permits as ifactual paper permits, or isolation certificates.The simulation of paper methods with dataenhancing reflect natural processing rather thanseparate element screens. We call this WYSIWYG Other factors come to bear where certain types of"what you see is what you get". Have you tried repetitive work require processing. Processing thatsome web based systems where you fill out a takes excessive time will inevitability be bypassed bysegment, go back to another and your original staff like it or not. This situation has to be avoidedinput is lost and you feel lost. Yes it might be OK and can be accomplished with risk assessmentto purchase a book on-line but its no good when library and process route. This still ensures a riskyou have spent a lot of time defining the isolation assessment and signoff process but provides anand lost your information! effective streamlined method for this type of work. An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Page 4 of 8
  6. 6. A STEP CHANGE IN SAFETY MANAGEMENTIndustrial Sector ApproachesOur observation of the oil & gas,power generation and chemicalsectors show that each has aframework of permits andcertificates that reflect practiceswithin that industrial sector.Taking the the Oil & Gas sector first, its "permit form"generally acts as a risk assessment along w i t hreferences to applicable isolation and other relatedcertificates. The Power Generation industry tends toprovides risk and method statements that are attachedto a work order along with specific PTW and isolationscertificates that have to be obtained prior to workcommencement. In essence both are similar but the Improved Safetypresentation of information varies substantially.It is difficult to generalise in a short overview, but a Planning & Trackingbrief synopsis is that the Oil & Gas industry in the UKfeature a permit which contains a check approach to Engica have introduced two new concepts andrisk assessment with attached isolation certificates. methods to support the safety process, one beingMost systems provide a form of surren d e r a n d the m e c h a n i s m t o p l a n s h u t d o w n s a f e t yhandover method with an emphasis on the permit valid requirements visually and efficiently. The other isduration and its expiry time. Power Generation in the an introduction of a digital dashboard to informUK tends to lead with an appropriate permit containing operational controllers of all work permit activities,the isolations, controls and precautions with a risk and permit location tracking and validity status.method statement attached to the work order. The Q4 ISSoW Safety System provides a uniqueAll sectors in UK use various arra n g e m e n t s o f and powerful integration with Microsoft Visio tolockboxes and lock bars to secure perm i t s a n d develop visual isolation networks that can serve inisolations. UK Power plants substantially utilise lockbox the preparation of isolation documents for a plantcross locking as a more common feature to derive outage or shutdown. The functions provide a visualcascaded permits. Cascaded locking introduces a more drag and drop mechanism on Equipment an dcomplex arrangement to manage in terms of permit Isolations to provide a system, or sub-systemplanning and release but provides efficient lock network, that can be called upon to generatearrangements and faster shutdown isolation to work documents within the permit system. You can userelease. Note the method does not compromise safety. Visio to draw your lock boxes or bars in any wayUSA power and oil operators on the other hand tend to that is convenient and clear. Then, drawing datarely on isolation lists which are a form of isolation directly from the safety database use our uniquecertificate with plant tagging rather than lock box Visio integration to assign equipment, isolations andsecurity. The nuclear power business in both UK and other information directly onto the Visio diagram.USA exhibit substantial additional safety cross checks Draw on cascades and cross-locks for an outageand authorisation clearance. Chemical and process and then save the entire design straight into theorganisations seem to use a hybrid of such systems safety system as an outage or shutdown template.with process strength dependent on the danger ratingof the site. An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Page 5 of 8
  7. 7. A STEP CHANGE IN SAFETY MANAGEMENTAdoption and Implementation Safety is no doubt one of the top priorities to operators and introducing a step improvement change to safety methods needs a plan, resource and a supplier with the necessary expertise.An electronic system can be installed and configured quite quickly onto an organisationnetwork. A summary of elements associated with an electronic system configuration areshown below.Ÿ Configuration of Screen and Hardcopy Permit and Certificate Forms along with State Flow LogicŸ Entry of Authorisation personnel and permissionsŸ Injection of Plant Isolation Information (note: - can be grown with system)Ÿ Injection of Risk Assessment Information (note: - can be grown with system)Ÿ Configuration of Site Drawing for Digital Dashboard (optional)Ÿ Integration with existing Work Management System (optional)It is the definition and the adoption programme tha tneeds special attention. As one might guess thedefinition stage presents a series of challenges toget agreement if methods are going to be improvedover the existing process rather than a currentsystem setup. For the oil and gas offshore peoplegetting people together should be factored into theplan. Always put in place a project manager withthe authority level to facilitate and make decisions.Allocate realistic timescales but with hard targetmilestones. All pretty obvious but needless to sayare the reasons why many software systems getdelayed. Engica are obviously here to help theprocess. Our UK office currently implem e n t snumerous major systems each year so weve seenand been there. We rely on success for our nextjob so we want our clients to shape up well.Quality training is centr a l t o t h e u s e o f a nIntegrated Safe System of Work. Central to the use Here are some aspects that pertain toof the Q4 Permit system are a series of training offshore sitespackages to get the system working effectively forall your staff and contracting personnel. A series of Ÿ Project Managementpurpose built training packages to get the system Ÿ Awareness and Communication Campaignimplemented across the field and onshore sites can Ÿ Purpose Built E-Training Adoption Packagebe constructed to install confidence in the system Ÿ Procedure Manualsand the discipline to use the systems correctly. In Ÿ Super User and Administ r a t i o n S y s t e maddition purpose built e-learning courses can be Trainingdesigned as part of the overall project. The e- Ÿ Mass Staff Traininglearning courses are tailored around the necessary Ÿ Offshore Handholdinglevel of knowledge each user needs. An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Page 6 of 8
  8. 8. A STEP CHANGE IN SAFETY MANAGEMENTAdoption and ImplementationOperational LanguagesInternational installations with regard to nativ elanguage operators such as China and Kazakhstanhave to be borne in mind. The Q4 Safety system hasbeen purposely designed for multi-lingual deployment.This can be in the pure native langua g e w h i c hsubstantially applies to Power utilities, whilst oil andgas often uses English as its management language.Having a single language however may degrade itsmessage functions to native staff. Engica overcomethis by having dual language formats on both formsand data. This type of configuration takes longer toimplement and increases the cost of a system due toproviding dual language training and other elements.As a footnote our experience is that Polish translationrepresented one of the harder languages to presentdue to phrase and field label lengths. Chinese orsymbolic script is surprisingly much easier but requiresthe whole system to be uni-coded which Q4 is. Anotheradvisory point is to choose a system that has alreadyundergone one system multi-language use or you will Cost Considerationsbe waiting a long time for its delivery, Engicas firsttranslation experience was Japanese over ten years Recognising that safety should not be sacrificed forago and we had to learn many hard lessons about data cost, it is however normal to factor the cost into abase query language handling and other language solution selection. With regard to a Software Safetyinterface factors. Engica are pleased to say that we Management System a view must be taken not onlyhave developed the necessary techniques to overcome on the initial implementa t i o n w h i c h s h o u l dthese factors and have a track record of proven use in encompass the necessary project elements to makemany languages. the installation a success but also confirmation on the life running costs. Selection of the technology and its underlying architecture play a key role inLife Cycle Considerations keeping the costs fair with regard to sys t e m support, upgrades and development of new custom elements that may be needed. Sound advice is toSituations vary depending upon the plants life cycle always check with existing users and to questionwhich can categorised into six basic phases; plant variation to contract costs as well as overall, plant construction & commissioning, early lifeoperation, mid-life operation, late-life operation but Factors such as experience, size of user base,approaching retirement and finally decommissioning & integration track record and international supportdisassembly. All require a comprehensive approach to may well affect a solution choice. The best is notsafety but d e s i g n t o m i d - l i f e o f f e r t h e b e s t necessarily the most expensive but the applicationopportunities to apply new electronic systems if looking choice must have a pedigree of proven use to avoidat the return on investment. problems with a mission critical safety system.The oil and gas industry have a good track record of Engica feel well positioned in all of the aspectsearly deployment of management systems and new mentioned above and more, and can a s s e s sdesign and builds offer a great opportunity to get potential client requirements and prepare a detailedsystems set up even through the design phase ready project plan with unambiguous costs for both thefor the construction and operation phases. implementation project and its life cycle costs. An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Page 7 of 8
  9. 9. A STEP CHANGE IN SAFETY MANAGEMENTSynopsisThe age of Integrated Safe System of WorkISSoW systems is taking shape and there area number of further techniques not covered inthis short article that can also assist a safetyengineer. The next decade will see substantialimprovements although a completely risk freeenvironment is somewhat hard to envisage.Dealing with high energy, Mother Nature,harsh environme n t s a n d a b s o l u t e s t a f fawareness all create a challenge to safety.For more information seewww.engica.comEngica Technology provide software,implementation and integration formission critical maintenance, workflow, safety and logistic management.Author: Ken HuskissonCopyright: Engica Technology SystemsIntenational © 2003 An engica overview of safety management using electronic PTW systems with an Integrated Safe System of Work (ISSoW) Page 8 of 8