Vulnerability review and assessment for safety and environmental critical equipment to control escalation risks on atmospheric storage tank sites

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  • Published: May 2023
  • REF/ISBN: 978 1 78725 3735
  • Edition: 1st
  • Status: Current

The vulnerability of safety and environmental critical (SEC) equipment used in emergency response to prevent, limit, or mitigate further escalation consequences has become a major concern after large-scale multi-tank incidents on atmospheric storage tank sites.

However, there has been a focus on the requirement for SEC equipment for worst case scenarios, and its potential vulnerability. As a result, SEC equipment required at preceding earlier incident stages, and its vulnerability at these earlier stages, may not be fully assessed. Neglecting these stages may increase the likelihood of worst-case events due to failures in earlier fire stages. It is crucial to review all stages of potential incidents to ensure proper definition and suitability of SEC equipment and its operation throughout the incident escalation.

The selection of SEC equipment should be part of the fire, explosion, and health hazard management (FEHM) risk assessment and emergency response plans for the tank storage site.

Once a suitable risk assessment process is conducted for SEC equipment selection, it is necessary to demonstrate that the chosen measures are as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP). This technical publication provides a list of typical SEC equipment and human interactions, which can support FEHM risk assessments and help identify appropriate emergency response measures and equipment.

The aim of this technical publication is to support these preceding risk-based assessments with a means to review and assess the vulnerability of the identified SEC equipment from these previous assessments. It provides a methodology that enables duty holders of atmospheric storage tank sites to meet the requirements of Recommendation 12 of HSE Safety and environmental standards for fuel storage sitesProcess Safety Leadership Group. Final report (a.k.a. PSLG Final report) to ‘evaluate the siting and/or suitable protection of emergency response facilities such as firefighting pumps, lagoons or manual emergency switches’.

Provided alongside this technical publication is an MS Excel file containing a blank assessment record table, which may be used by duty holders as a starting point for their site-specific SEC equipment vulnerability assessments. Click here to view.

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