Archive for the ‘Safety’ Category

Die Vielfalt der Technologien ist für die Prozessindustrie beim Thema Digitalisierung bei betrieblichen Sicherheitsthemen eine besondere Herausforderung. Zu dieser Einschätzung kommt Hans Volkmar Schwarz, Vice President Process Safety Projects bei BASF. Wir sprachen mit ihm wenige Tage vor der „European Conference on Process Safety and Big Data“ in Frankfurt.

DECHEMA: Was sind aus Ihrer Sicht die größten Herausforderungen im Bereich Digitalisierung für die Prozessindustrie?

Hans Volkmar Schwarz: Momentan geht es darum, für die vielen Ideen, die es gibt, auch Business Cases zu haben. Man möchte das Geld ja für die Dinge ausgeben, die Effizienz, Effektivität und Wirtschaftlichkeit verbessern.Die Herausforderung ist es, zu verstehen, welche auf Sicherheit bezogenen Arbeitsprozesse durch Digitalisierung verbessert oder gar in disruptiver Weise ersetzt werden können, um damit bessere Safety-Ergebnisse zu erreichen.

DECHEMA: Wenn Sie an die Konferenz Anfang November denken, gibt es etwas, worauf Sie sich besonders freuen?

 Schwarz: Vor dem oben beschriebenen Hintergrund der Optimierung von Arbeitsprozessen freue ich mich darauf, im Rahmen der Konferenz Beispiele und Erfahrungsberichte zu hören, die zu verbesserter Sicherheitsleistung führen werden, unnd natürlich auch neue Methoden und Vorschläge für Anwendungen.

Mehr zur Konferenz sowie Anmeldung unter https://www.aiche.org/ccps/conferences/european-conference-on-process-safety-and-big-data/2018


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loss prevention 2016The process industry is often seen as rather conservative. From a safety perspective, this seems very reasonable – every change in a process may entrail unknown risks, and in the process industries the consequences may be severe. On the other hand, innovation requires the courage to make changes, while handling risk at the same time. In the run-up to Loss Prevention 2016, we spoke to Eckard Foltin, Foltin Future Consulting, about the dilemma of innovation.

The Germans are considered rather risk averse. In what ways might this hinder innovation?

Innovation begins with the destruction of existing established environments and new combination of technologies, processes, materials, …- that means that anyone who is affected, must leave his comfort zone and has to face new realities. Safety conscious people take this step very reluctantly, trying to maintain the status quo. The more changes causes the innovation, the higher the hurdle for implementation.

A typical example for a seeming trade-off between a disruptive innovation and established (at least imagined) safety are autonomous cars. The public discussion in Germany focuses mainly on the question of responsibilities in case of an accident. What would you recommend to the companies who are in charge?

Autonomous driving is not the pure substitution: driver by autopilot system – the entire system changes. All typical driving characteristics and control mechanisms work very well in machine – machine interface network. Autonomous driving is also an emotional decision. Car driving as a passion has nothing to do with traveling a distance from A to B with the daily routine. I am convinced that we could implement autonomous driving faster, if we use it in public life, such as autonomous transport media in airports, exhibition grounds, industry areas, …

Your lecture has the title “Companies in the tension between failure culture and security claim”. How much failure is tolerable for the sake of innovation? (mehr …)

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loss prevention 2016

Learn more at Loss Prevention – register now at http://www.lp2016.eu

The Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial Accidents came into existence in 1992. 41 countries have joined so far. The cooperate not only in the case of severe accidents, but they have implemented prevention measures, exchanging standards and best practices. At Loss Prevention 2016, Franziska Ilg-Hirsch (UNECE) & Martin Merkofer (Swiss Federal Office for the Environment) will present the Convention and its practical implementation in the case of Switzerland. We interviewed them before the event what the Convention has changed.

In your plenary lecture, you will outline the Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial Accidents. What is the main goal of this Convention?

The main goals of the Convention are to protect human health and the environment by preventing industrial accidents from occurring, reducing their frequency and severity and by mitigating their effects. The Convention fosters transboundary cooperation among neighbouring or riparian countries for the prevention of, preparedness for and response to such industrial accidents.

2016 marks the 30th anniversary of the Sandoz accident that had severe cross-border implications for the environment. The Convention came into existence in 1992. If you take the Sandoz accident as an example, what would be handled differently today with the Convention in place compared to 1986?

Today, compared with 1986, the 41 Parties to the Convention – comprising countries in the EU, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia – have put in place measures for industrial accident prevention and preparedness and related national and regional cooperation structures. Countries have established horizontal mechanisms for cooperation at the national level among authorities responsible for environmental protection, civil protection, internal affairs, emergency situations, defense, health, just to name a few…Countries have also implemented and strengthened vertical and horizontal cooperation between the national, regional and local authorities.It is the local authorities, for example, which are the first to become aware of accidents at installations holding hazardous substances.

„It is important that information is passed on from local authorities“

It is important that this information is passed on in accordance with the requirements of the Convention, to the public, and to neighbouring countries. In the past 30 years, countries have strengthened the obligations placed on the operators to safely manage their installations and the respective scrutiny, for example through the periodic submission of safety reports, inspections and audits. And very importantly, according to Art. 4 of the Convention, countries have to enter into discussions on the identification of hazardous activities and to inform each other mutually about installations which could cause an accident with transboundary effects, and put in place joint emergency preparedness and response measures. (mehr …)

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