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Competence in process safety is important for preventing accidents.
The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) commented on a study, which found that one in five accidents caused by equipment failures in the chemical process industries are the result of human and organizational errors, and discussed the importance of process safety in a recent press release.
“Accidents caused by equipment failures have many potential causes including contamination, corrosion, poor installation, and mechanical failures. But it is worrying to see that human and organizational failures head the list of contributing factors,” said David Brown, chief executive of IChemE, in the press release. “Competence in process safety lies at the heart of the chemical engineering skill set. Hopefully, our work over the next few years to introduce a new international qualification for process safety professionals, the development of a virtual safety center, and our ambition to promote higher standards in the corporate governance of process safety will help drive down avoidable accidents,” added Brown.
IChemE is a global professional membership organization with offices in Australia, China, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the UK. Earlier this year, IChemE published a revised technical strategy document,Chemical Engineering Matters, which outlines IChemE’s broader thinking on the areas where the profession creates, maintains, or improves quality of life. One focus of the strategy is the role of chemical engineering in process safety.