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News Room

This page contains previous items from our Latest News feature.

CSB Analysis of Hydrogen Explosion at Silver Eagle Refinery

Publish Date: 2014-04-10
Category: Industry News

A massive explosion and fire occurred on November 4, 2009 at the Silver Eagle Refinery in Woods Cross, Utah. It damaged over 100 homes in a nearby neighborhood and caused four workers to be blown to the ground although they were not seriously injured. The CSB has found that the accident was caused by the rupture of a pipe that had become dangerously thin from corrosion.

Click here for more information.

Comments Available on OSHA PSM RFI

Publish Date: 2014-04-10
Category: Industry News

Comments submitted in response to the Request for Information by the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) on potential revisions to the Process Safety Management (PSM) standard are available at www.regulations.gov, docket number OSHA-2013-0020.

Click here to access the comments.

Primatech's Dr. Paul Baybutt authors paper on the ALARP principle in process safety

Publish Date: 2014-04-10
Category: Primatech News

The paper was published in Process Safety Progress,Vol. 33, Issue 1, Pages: 36-40, March 2014.


The principle that the risks for a facility should be reduced to as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP) increasingly is embraced around the world. This article describes how the principle can be used to establish both individual and group risk tolerance criteria which are needed for risk analysis studies using techniques such as Layers of Protection Analysis (LOPA). The consideration of uncertainties in risk estimates in the ALARP context and the use of the precautionary principle are also described and the use of cost-benefit analysis in applying the ALARP principle is discussed. Other related principles used in risk management are described.

Due Date for Comments on OSHA RFI is Extended

Publish Date: 2014-03-18
Category: Industry News

In response to requests for an extension, the deadline to submit written comments on OSHA's Request For Information (RFI) on possible revisions to the Process Safety Management standard has been extended from March 10 to March 31 to allow stakeholders additional time to comment.

Primatech to Exhibit at the 2014 Global Congress on Process Safety

Publish Date: 2014-03-06
Category: Primatech News

Primatech will be exhibiting at the 10th Global Congress on Process Safety on March 31 – April 2 in New Orleans.

Representing Primatech at this year's conference will be Andrew Chapman, Shawn Metzler, Steven Baybutt, and Kim Mullins. They will be available to discuss how Primatech's consulting, training, and software can assist in meeting your organization's process safety objectives.

Be sure to drop off your business card at Primatech's booth for a chance to win an iPad Mini!

Chemical Safety Board Testimony in the US Senate

Publish Date: 2014-03-06
Category: Industry News

Dr. Rafael Moure-Eraso, Chairperson of the U.S. Chemical Safety Board testified at the March 6, 2014, Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing entitled "Preventing potential chemical threats and improving safety: Oversight of the President's Executive Order on improving chemical facility safety and security".

Dr. Moure-Eraso testified that recent accidents were preventable and stated that the United States is facing an industrial chemical safety crisis. He emphasized the importance of using inherently safety technology and the value of the safety case approach for managing process safety. His testimony is available at:


Liquid Metal Embrittlement by Mercury

Publish Date: 2014-03-03
Category: Industry News

On February 26, 2014, the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) issued a Safety Notice addressing liquid metal embrittlement (LME) by mercury in the refining and allied process industries.

The safety notice describes the potential integrity hazards relating to the presence of mercury in crude oil, the refining process, and some downstream industries. Increasingly, mercury is present in crude oil feedstock and contaminates parts of the process in varying degrees. Some metallurgies are known to be vulnerable to cracking when exposed to mercury. Cracking may occur in vessels, pipework, and equipment. A number of recent failures of primary containment have been caused by LME involving mercury. Suitable precautions should be taken to limit the risk.

For further information, consult HSE Bulletin HID 2 - 2014.

Final Report by California Interagency Working Group on Refinery Safety

Publish Date: 2014-02-21
Category: Industry News

The final report, Improving Public and Worker Safety at Oil Refineries, has been released. The effort was undertaken following the 2012 Chevron refinery fire in Richmond, California. The report contains numerous recommendations for improving process safety at refineries. It is available at:


Primatech Presentations at the 2014 Global Congress on Process Safety

Publish Date: 2014-02-21
Category: Primatech News

The following presentations will be delivered by Primatech at the upcoming Global Congress on Process Safety to be held at the Hilton Riverside hotel in New Orleans, Louisiana:

  • Overcoming challenges in using layers of protection analysis (LOPA) to determine safety integrity levels (SILS) by Paul Baybutt, Grand Ballroom B, 1:30 PM, Monday, March 31.
  • Requirements for improved PHA methods: Addressing weaknesses in HAZOP and other traditional PHA methods by Paul Baybutt, Grand Ballroom B, 2:00 PM Tuesday, April 1.
  • Competence requirements for process hazard analysis (PHA) teams by Paul Baybutt, Grand Ballroom B, 10:45 AM, Wednesday, April 2.

You can register for the Congress at:


Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity

Publish Date: 2014-02-13
Category: Industry News

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has released the document,
Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity. The framework provides a structure that organizations can use to develop and improve cyber security programs.

NIST was charged with putting the framework together under a February 2013, Executive Order that calls for the development of a voluntary, risk based cybersecurity framework.

The framework document is described as a living document that will need to be updated to keep pace with changes in technology, threats and other factors, and to incorporate lessons learned from its use.

The document describes three main elements: framework core, tiers and profiles. The framework core presents five functions: identify, protect, detect, respond and recover. Together, they allow an organization to understand and shape its cyber security program. Tiers describe the degree to which an organization's cyber security program meets goals identified in the framework. Profiles help organizations improve their current cyber security programs.

The framework document and related documents can be found on the website: