The HAZOP study gives the risk manager an opportunity to examine all critical design, operating, and maintenance aspects of a process system concurrently with their interactions, interrelationships, and interdependence. It provides an opportunity for thorough examination of all factors that affect plant safety and productivity in order to identify, quantify and control true hazards in the most efficient manner possible.
Risk is everywhere, and engineers instinctively know that there are risks involved when they design and operate products, facilities, and processes. There is a need to assess and quantify the risk of new projects or process changes so as to mitigate these potential hazards. It´s a systematic approach to investigating the potential risks and incidents that may happen within a particular operational condition.
HAZOP is a useful methodology for assessing the hazards and operational problems that can occur during normal operations, those events which are unlikely to have long-term effects and not likely cause an accident. Hazop study includes assessment of hazardous effects, initiating events that could jeopardize the chain of events, analyzing risk exposures, etc. A systematic approach is used which methodically identifies sources of potential accidents and forms a basis for evaluation and development of strategies to eliminate or reduce them. Hazop studies also help the analysts or investigators to arrive at the probable cause of accidents as well as their contributing conditions.
The basic purpose of HAZOP is to define the Safety consultant around a plant through methods including ID the hazards, impact of adverse events, and identify measures to mitigate the risk. HAZOP helps separate “signal from the noise” so that risks can be assessed properly by focusing on how losses can occur rather than on what might cause them.
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