Operating Procedure Generation

Operators are the first-line hands when it comes to running a plant. The ever-dynamic process that occurs at upstream platforms, midstream terminals, downstream refineries, and chemical plants would be difficult for anyone to keep straight without written guidance and instruction. This is why OSHA 1910.119(f) requires PSM-covered facilities to have up to date and accurate operating procedures. Per the PSM mandate, the “employer shall develop and implement written operating procedures that provide clear instructions for safely conducting activities involved in each covered process consistent with the process safety information.”

Well-written operating procedures can be hard to come by in industry, yet are invaluable for a company that has them. The two criteria that make operating procedures so hard to write are that (1) they have to be concise enough to not over-burden an experienced operator, but (2) detailed enough for a new operator to comprehend and perform. A well-written operating procedure not only acts as the means to keep your process running safely, but also serves as a training tool for new operators.

Cognascents engineers are available to work with company personnel to generate operating procedures that address the following:
  • Initial start-up
  • Normal operations
  • Temporary operations
  • Emergency shutdown
  • Emergency operations
  • Normal shutdown
  • Start-up following a turnaround, or after an emergency shutdown
  • Operating limits
  • Consequences of deviations
  • Steps required to correct or avoid deviation
  • Safety and health considerations
  • Properties of, and hazards presented by, the chemicals used in the process
  • Precautions necessary to prevent exposure, including engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective equipment
  • Control measures to be taken if physical contact or airborne exposure occurs
  • Quality control for raw materials and control of hazardous chemical inventory levels
  • Any special or unique hazards
  • Safety systems and their functions

Cognascents has worked with many of the major oil, gas, and chemical companies to develop operating procedures from scratch or to update operating procedures after a major design change. Cognascents has also worked with small companies to develop operating procedures for processes that have grown in the last decade and are now covered by PSM.

In addition to writing operating procedures, Cognascents also provides facilitators to risk-assess operating procedures. Cognascents facilitators can lead a team through a step-by-step process hazard analysis to identify and mitigate potential hazard scenarios. Visit our Process Hazards Analysis page to see when we are available to help you perform a risk assessment on your operating procedures. Our PHA facilitators have experience in performing What-If and Checklist Analyses, HAZIDs, and HAZOPs for our clients operating procedures.

Cognascents engineers are multi-disciplined engineers with experience across the oil, gas, and chemicals industries. Cognascents has worked with clients through regulatory scrutiny and knows what “compliance” looks like. Cognascents prides itself on being accessible to all and affordable to all, no matter a company’s size and status.

Contact Cognascents to help you scope out and price your next PSM operating procedure development effort. We are here to serve.