This paper explains the benefits of API Risk-Based Inspection (RBI) over traditional methods of determining inspection schedules for pressure relieving devices (PRDs). The API “Base Resource Document on RBI” (API 581) details an accepted RBI methodology for pressure relieving devices. This methodology can be used to set risk-based inspection intervals for PRDs. Using risk to establish inspection schedules provides a number of benefits over traditional time-based inspection scheduling, including significant reduction of risk and optimization of costs incurred by inspections.

Pressure Relief Devices (PRD) and PRD Inspection Overview

Pressure relief devices (PRDs) are safety devices designed to protect pressurized vessels or systems during an overpressure event. Also known as pressure safety valves (PSVs), pressure relief valves (PRVs), safety relief devices (SRDs) and relief valves (RVs), PRDs serve as the last line of defense for pressure vessels, boilers and other pressurized containment. It is vital to have a reliable inspection program in place to ensure availability of PRDs in case of overpressure events.

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