Primatech Inc. was founded in 1987 in Columbus, Ohio by Dr. Paul Baybutt to provide process safety and risk management consulting, training and software for the process industries. Primatech's business was driven initially by the desire of companies to manage the risks associated with their facilities as a matter of policy. These risks include major fires, explosions and hazardous material releases which may injure people, destroy property or produce adverse environmental impacts. The development of laws and regulations which required companies to perform the type of services offered by Primatech resulted in a steady rise in Primatech's business. These regulations were initially passed at the state level including the Toxic Catastrophe Prevention Act (TCPA) in New Jersey, the Risk Management and Prevention Program (RMPP) in California, and the Extremely Hazardous Substances Risk Management Act (EHSRMA) in Delaware.
In 1992, the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) promulgated its Process Safety Management (PSM) standard which greatly enlarged the market for process safety services and products. In 1996, as part of the Clean Air Act, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued the Risk Management Program (RMP) rule which became effective in 1999. Many other countries have adopted similar regulatory programs which created a broader worldwide market for process safety services and products.
Upon its inception, Primatech quickly secured consulting projects to conduct PHA's and risk assessments. Significant early contract awards included projects to provide PHA facilitators on an ongoing basis for a major oil and gas refinery, for an international engineering and design firm, and for one of the largest oil field joint venture development projects in North America. This led to similar contracts over the years including providing PHA facilitation and other PSM services to one of the world's largest refineries for over 15 years.
A notable milestone was the award of a contract to Primatech by OSHA to provide tools to assist OSHA inspectors in evaluating companies' compliance with the OSHA PSM standard. This tool helped OSHA inspectors understand how to assess compliance with some of the more complex elements of the PSM standard.
Primatech was selected to author a bulletin on EPA's RMP regulation by the National Association of Chemical Distributors (NACD) and to update PSM guidelines and develop EPA RMP guidelines by the International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration (IIAR).
Primatech was selected to provide consulting services on behalf of the BP US Refineries Independent Safety Review Panel, which was formed to investigate the March, 2005 BP Texas City accident.
Primatech has expanded its service base over the years to many areas of the process industries. For example, contracts were awarded to the company to perform PSM audits and training for a major pharmaceutical company throughout the United States and Europe and to provide PSM/RMP development services and audits to one of the largest grocery operations in the United States. Similar contracts with other process companies and engineering firms have followed and continue today. Recent significant projects include long term contracts to provide mechanical integrity services for one of the world's largest energy companies and a project to assist a major industrial gases company incorporate LOPA into their process safety program.
As security became a primary concern of the process industries, Primatech developed new approaches for process security management and threat and vulnerability analysis for the assessment of physical and cyber threats to facilities. Primatech published numerous technical papers on these topics in technical journals. Primatech was awarded a contract by the National Association of Chemical Distributors (NACD) to review and recommend revisions to its Security Vulnerability Assessment (SVA) methodology and guidelines for approval by CCPS. Primatech was subsequently selected by the NACD to conduct a webinar on the SVA Methodology.
Primatech has also provided expert witness testimony and litigation support services. One notable project was for Esso Australia in litigation relating to an accident at the Longford Gas Plant in the state of Victoria.
Primatech has organized and participated in a variety of technical conferences and meetings. Primatech was co-sponsor of an International Workshop on Use of Human and Organization Factors in the Management of Safety and Environmental Hazards for Offshore Operations and Facilities in cooperation with the US Minerals Management Service and the UK Health & Safety Executive.
In the training area, one of Primatech's first projects was to develop training course materials and deliver them to help train USEPA staff as process safety inspectors. Courses were taught on multiple occasions for various USEPA regions. Primatech also developed and taught courses on Hazard and Risk Analysis, Loss Prevention, and Hazardous Materials Response for individual clients and through repeated deliveries quickly trained literally hundreds of people.
In 1990, Primatech formed the Primatech Training Institute (PTI) to provide a syllabus of courses in process safety and risk management to be offered in various locations throughout the year for public enrollment. PTI was the first organization of its type in process safety and risk management. A portfolio of courses has been developed and we continually update courses and add new courses to the portfolio. Primatech was the first company to offer training on Process Hazard Analysis (PHA) for Team Leaders. Today's PHA for Team Leaders is Primatech's flagship course out of over 35 courses that are now offered. Primatech has taught training courses for clients overseas since its inception. PTI was extended overseas, first with offerings in Europe and then in Asia and the Middle East.
Primatech was selected to provide Advanced Process Safety Management training to OSHA inspectors. We have also provided various workshops and training seminars through OSHA's training program. Primatech has provided multiple training courses to the United Space Alliance which is NASA's primary industry partner in human space operations. Primatech has also conducted training courses on process safety and risk management for the International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration (IIAR).
Primatech has presented its courses for professional organizations. Primatech presented training courses on LOPA, Human Factors and Process Security on behalf of the American Society of Safety Engineers. Also, Primatech presented a course on Cyber Security Risk Analysis for the Instrumentation, Systems and Automation Society (ISA).
Primatech is the official provider of PHA team leader and LOPA training for numerous companies. Courses are provided in-house for some of these companies and others send employees to Primatech's public course deliveries.
Deliveries in Spanish for in-house training courses began in 2010 and for public training courses in 2011. Primatech began offering a series of webinars in 2010.
Soon after its founding, Primatech released the world's first commercial PHA software, HAZOP-PC, in 1988. Other PHA products were released subsequently including WHAT-IF-PC, FMEA-PC and PHA-PC. An auditing tool, AUDIT-PC, was also released. These products were quickly adopted by companies in the US and around the world. An early licensee of HAZOP-PC was Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) in the UK, the company that developed the HAZOP study technique. The early PHA software products were later combined into a single tool, PHAWorks®, that is currently the flagship software product of the company.
Other products that have been released include an action item tracking program, MANAGE-PC, a PSM resource program, PSMSource, and an enterprise software package for tracking action items, Tracker™. LOPAWorks®, a tool for performing Layers of Protection Analysis (LOPA) to help resolve PHA recommendations and comply with the IEC61511 and S84 standards for safety instrumented systems (SISs) was recently released.