The Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA reports that 32 million workers around the world are exposed to hazards from any of the over 65,000 chemicals they may encounter in the workplace.
The process safety management (PSM) standard is an essential part of keeping workers safe. It helps you develop a proper plan to manage every part of your organization to reduce risk and improve effectiveness.
Businesses that use hazardous chemicals may focus more heavily on Process Safety Management. The strategy is still critical for the safety of every business, as chemical hazards can arise from anywhere.
Incorporating PSM is critical to keeping your business running safely. Read on learn everything you need to know about this essential safety practice.
What Is Process Safety Management?
PSM prevents exposure to any hazardous chemicals such as gases and radioactive elements. These can be present in almost any workspace, which is why all businesses must take them into consideration.
OSHA updates its PSM standards to define what is considered a hazardous chemical and how to manage them. The standards contain several different elements, including:
- Accurate process safety information or PSI
- Process hazard analysis
- Safe operating procedures available in writing
- Employee training and participation
- Working with contractors
- A pre-startup safety review
- Maintaining the mechanical integrity of all mechanical components
- Permits for “hot work” operations
- Management of change
- Incident Investigation
- Planning for and responding to emergencies
- Compliance audits
- Providing the necessary information, even if it involves trade secret
Knowing all of these elements is possible the most important part of developing a process safety management program. It’s impossible to develop a proper plan without knowing them all.
How Do I Create a Process Safety Management Strategy?
Incorporating PSM should be a constant effort rather than a temporary change. Chemical exposure could arise at any time, and you must be able to adapt your plan to any new potential hazards.
Like many business practices, Process Safety Management requires constant evaluation of every part of your business. Knowing where potential hazards come from before they become an issue makes them easier to manage.
It’s also important to remember every part of a PSM program must work with the other. For example, management of change involves deciding how your processing safety plan can adapt to any changes in the other components of the PSM standard.
The final important thing to remember is the legal aspect of process safety management. Not meeting OSHA’s standards in this area can ruin your reputation and even lead to the shutdown of your entire operation.
Processing safety is not something that any organization can ignore. Ignoring a single component can put your employees at risk of serious injury or even death.
Where Can I Learn More?
PSM or Process Safety Management is one of the most critical safety measures that a business can implement. It prevents exposure to any and all toxic chemicals.
Developing a PSM program is one of the most important things you can do to maintain compliance and keep your employees safe. Doing so requires following all components of OSHA’s standards and knowing how they relate to each other.
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