Process safety

Process safety management plays a central role in the prevention of major accident hazards. We have worked diligently to develop and implement a robust process safety management system that controls our process hazards and minimizes the risk of a catastrophic process safety incident.

Our process safety management

  • Process safety standards
  • Process safety audits
  • Process safety performance indicators (PSPIs)

Risk assessment – Identify hazards and critical control measures

Safe operation – Integrate critical control measures into operational procedures

Management of change – Eliminate risks from changes to existing critical control measures

Safe maintenance – Maintain the integrity of critical equipment and process controls

Incident investigation – Identify root causes to prevent recurrence

Emergency response – Minimize emergency impacts

Competency – Train and assess staff for competence in required activities

Management of Contractors – Manage contractors effectively to ensure safety for all involved

  • Compliance with the process safety standards is monitored through process safety audits, carried out by our Corporate SHE team.
  • These audits measure a site’s compliance against the corporate standards to establish the degree of implementation and operational employee awareness and to assess critical control measures.
  • The outcomes of the audits are discussed during the quarterly RESPECT committee meetings.
  • PSPIs are monitored at site level and are used to determine the effectiveness of all programs and activities that are targeted at reducing process safety incidents.
  • The PSPIs are reviewed during the quarterly RESPECT committee meetings and are used to identify any areas of process safety management that need further focus or support.
  • Process safety leadership
  • Start-up authorisation (SuA) procedure

Process safety leadership program involves the Executive Team undertaking personal on-site visits focused on process safety demonstrating, at a local level, our Executive Team’s commitment to prevention of incidents and accidents.

  • Launched in 2019, our SuA procedure is used to assess and confirm that process safety will not be compromised following the introduction of new products, processes or major modifications.
  • The procedure uses a customized electronic platform to enable all appropriate safety and design issues to be considered, collated, reviewed, approved and documented prior to commissioning.
  • The SuA platform has been recently extended to capture key safety and design information for existing products, allowing sites to securely upload existing product dossiers so that they can be accessed and reviewed centrally.
  • At the end of 2022, there were over 180 approved product dossiers registered on the SuA platform.

Process safety enhancements

  • In 2022, we enhanced our Fire Protection Risk Assessment protocol by adding the requirement to evaluate and minimize the risk of business interruption in addition to the original concept of minimizing the risk to personnel. 
  • All manufacturing locations are due to have completed risk assessments by the end of 2023, after which time they will be reviewed on a 4-yearly cycle.

  • In 2022, recognizing that there is no one solution that fits all with regards to reducing the risk of loss from fires involving packaged goods, we launched a new guidance document for manufacturing sites. 
  • The guidance recognizes the potential safety risks associated with storing quantities of flammable goods in packaged units, including IBCs & drums. It advises on dedicated flammable goods storage areas, separation from other facilities, reduction of inventories, reduced reliance on plastic packaging, containment requirements and possible fire suppression techniques. 
  • All manufacturing sites were visited in 2022 to review viable options for the reduction of risk from fires involving packed goods, alongside the development of appropriate action plans to address areas of potential concern. 

  • The international standard IEC 62305 has been chosen in 2022 as the Innospec Standard for Lightning Protection, applicable to all new and existing facilities. 
  • The IEC Standard calls for:
    • A risk assessment to identify the potential consequences of a lightning strike on people, structures and electronic systems
    • A comparison of the risk assessment outcome with tolerability criteria
    • Selection of the appropriate lightning protection system where necessary

Preparing for emergencies

All our manufacturing sites need to be ready to provide a safe and competent response to an onsite emergency. For each site we have identified the potential emergency scenarios and documented site emergency response plans. All employees are trained in the contents of the plan and take part in practical exercises relevant to their role in the event of an emergency.

Innospec has partnered with Chemtrec in the US and Carechem 24 for all other global locations to provide emergency response support in the event of an incident involving one of our products, either during transportation to or at our customers’ premises. They offer multilingual, 24/7 emergency response helplines and are staffed by trained chemists, with access to a complete library of our Safety Data Sheets, to enable them to provide initial support in dealing with incidents.

Addressing Loss of Containment (LOC) chemical releases and spills

We take the safe containment of process materials handled at our manufacturing facilities very seriously. All unintentional chemical releases and spills are reported, tracked and investigated fully so we can understand exactly what has happened and remedy any underlying issues. All manufacturing facilities must develop and implement a LOC reduction program. Performance across the group is reviewed quarterly during the RESPECT meetings.

Regional review teams and dedicated LOC improvement teams at all our sites help to identify trends, discuss challenges and share best practice in LOC prevention.

Preventing Loss of Containment (LOC) chemical releases and spills

Actions taken to prevent LOC have included: site trend analysis, improvements to preventative maintenance schemes of work, more robust engineering solutions, enhanced plant equipment labelling, employee training, improved communications, regular audits, and routine review meetings.

In 2022, a new Corporate Guidance note was issued detailing the requirements for minimizing the risk of a hazardous material being released from an unsealed ‘open end’ – a length of pipework with only one valve or isolation between the process and the environment – in a plant’s production process. The standard requires all ‘open ends’ to be identified, registered, and classified before being eliminated or managed.