In this day and age, Process Safety Management (PSM) has become more of a focus as incidents continue to occur in industrial facilities. In order to tackle core challenges around PSM Mechanical Integrity (MI) at your facility, you need to take the time to identify primary problem areas and develop your PSM MI written program. Once you have completed those steps, you should connect your written program to your actual MI program in order to make it a reality in your day-to-day operations. To do so, follow these steps:

Ensure that your procedure of defining covered equipment is rolled out effectively across your assets.

For example, if you defined a vessel as covered under your written program, make sure that you have that vessel in your maintenance management system, marked as such in your testing, and that inspection is there for your guidelines. On the piping side, make sure your piping is circuitized effectively. Make sure you follow best-in-class circuitization guidelines and ensure there is connection between your P&IDs and your testing and inspection plans in your systems.

Make sure you’re gathering the right data based on the definition of covered assets.

If you’re trying to put together good testing and inspection plans for piping or fixed equipment, you really want to see all historical inspections and maintenance on that asset. You also want to make sure you are confirming its design (metallurgy, PWHT, vessel dimensions, minimum thickness, etc.), operations conditions, and real time data.

Make sure you’re doing the right analysis on that data to build good inspection and testing plans.

Utilize recognized damage/deterioration models or in-house company models you have to build predictive damage models with identified sensitivities (Integrity Operating Windows, for example, per API 584). Risk-based inspection does not necessarily make sense for every asset or even every facility, but if you are using a risk-based approach, make sure you are fueling it with the right data and that calculations are being done effectively in the right work processes and systems.

Ensure proper work execution of those plans is happening and that data coming back is plugged back into your work process.

Oftentimes, facilities have good plans but do not have strong accountability around the inspection execution, therefore they are unable to get good condition data that informs their program.

Do not forget about accountability and culture.

This is prioritized up and down the organization from the inspector to the MI Manager, the PSM Manager to the Plant Manager. There needs to be commitment at all levels. You should have clear goals for your PSM and MI program along with regular KPI dashboards you’re tracking as a team. Executives and the inspectors on the front line should be aligned to understand what success looks like not just annually, but every day.

Identifying primary problem areas, developing a written program, and then connecting that program to your current MI program will not only allow you to tackle core PSM challenges at your facility to properly mitigate risk around loss of containment, but it will also allow you to positively impact your community as a whole. Interested in learning more? View the process in its entirety by checking out our PSM webinar recap.