Process Hazard Analysis (PHA)
A PHA is a technique used in the process industries to understand what can go wrong in a process, to assess how likely it is to go wrong, and then to establish the precautions required to prevent or help mitigate the consequences of the failure. There are a number of techniques that have been developed by process safety practitioners to assist in this process which when brought together with process safety expertise and knowledge of plant operations can produce valuable studies and ultimately a real reduction in operating risks.
In general, standards and industrial guidelines require or suggest that Process Hazard Assessments (PHAs) are performed for the design stage, operating stage and indeed for shut down. They should also be performed – or at least reviewed – whenever there is a significant change made to the process or operations. Furthermore, it is advised or mandated that a Process Hazard Analysis is validated again every five years.
Process Hazard Analysis (PHA) is best performed by a small team of persons assembled specifically for the project in hand. The team will likely include persons who are familiar with the process as well as persons familiar with the hazards.
At Dustcon Solutions, we are often asked to lead these PHAs but we are equally at home bringing our specialist knowledge in process safety to the team as participants with process safety-related subject matter expertise. We are always happy to discuss the make-up of any specific PHA team that is to be assembled.