Process Safety Information

March 4, 2024

While most industries outside of the hydrocarbon industry are not process safety-centric, the underlying premise of preventing significant incidents is a best practice and helps keep organizations aligned with societal expectations on safety. Having good Process Safety Information (PSI) to support safer operations is integral to a good Process Safety Management (PSM) system.

But who does PSI apply to, and what are the requirements? The first technical section of the Process Safety Management Regulation (OSHA 29 CFR 1910.119) answers those questions. While the regulation initially references PSI’s essential role in Process Hazards Analysis, PSI is critical for so much more. For example:

  • Operating procedures and training must be consistent with the available hazards and operational information contained in PSI
  • Mechanical Integrity and Quality Assurance programs should always begin with a determination of what PSM Critical Equipment is, as described in the PSI and consistent with applicable regulations
  • Management of Change processes and Pre-Startup Safety Reviews should be triggered when changes to the PSI are proposed
  • Emergency planning should begin with a thorough understanding of the hazards and inventories of the process materials in the affected area, as detailed in the PSI

In complex process industry facilities, the amount of critical process safety-related data and essential documents can feel overwhelming and can be further complicated by the dynamic nature of these documents during the facility lifecycle. That is why data management is critical; unfortunately, many incident investigations determine that the PSI was either not accurate, complete, or accessible when and where the incident occurred.

The most important consideration should be how useful the Process Safety Information is in preventing significant process safety incidents. This is why an excellent, effective PSI system must be:

  • Accurate – ensuring PSI documents accurately reflect the hazards, process, and equipment information is critical for effective risk assessment and management.
  • Complete – there are no less than 20 required PSI document types, from toxicity information to consequences of deviation to relief system design, and all must be considered and addressed by facilities covered by the PSM regulation.
  • Accessible – PSI users should be able to access critical information at the point of work because timely access to accurate information can be the difference between a near-miss and an incident.

An integrated PSM system, supported by a foundational PSI approach, can go a long way toward preventing serious process safety incidents. Operational Sustainability® (OS) can help simplify the process through our integrated, mobile-friendly OESuite® software solution – delivering critical PSI to the people who need it most.

Is your organization ready for a better approach to PSI? Connect with an OS expert to learn more.