Achieving IEC 61511 Safety Compliance with a Little Help

As the international safety standard IEC 61511 (ISA S84.02 in the U.S.) has provided process manufacturers a risk-based approach to safety in their plants.

Many organizations including Emerson are providing training and project execution services to assist these manufacturers in better understanding and complying with this standard. I’ve mentioned some of the training courses in an earlier safety engineering training post.

Obviously it takes people experienced in process safety to develop this training and execute safety projects. I had the opportunity to catch up with Bob Gale, a certified SIS Consultant and SIS lead in our Refining and Chemical industry organization. He has over 30 years of process automation experience, 20 of these in process safety, and is nationally recognized for his work in the development of the American Institute of Chemical Engineer’s (AIChE) chemical process safety practice guidelines.

Bob was also instrumental in helping the Refining and Chemical become part of Emerson’s global effort to achieve TÜV-certification in Functional Safety Management Systems in accordance with IEC 61511 for management and control of safety instrumented systems (SIS) applications.

Bob recently served as an SIS Consultant for a DeltaV SIS system used in an ultra low sulfur diesel plant application. In this capacity, he and the Emerson SIS project experts work with the manufacturer to verify the appropriate SIL levels and risk mitigation strategies of the safety instrumented system along with assisting the client with the conceptual design of the various Safety Instrumented Functions. Bob also works with manufacturers on all the earlier phases of the safety life cycle, from the Process Hazard Analysis through to Layer of Protection Analysis and SIL Determination.

For those working to achieve IEC 61511 compliance, Bob believes the place to start is with the education on the standard to understand the scope of the safety lifecycle. Of course he also believes you should assemble an experienced project team to help from the up front analysis, through the engineering, installation, commissioning, and ongoing support phases.

Posted Thursday, September 7th, 2006 under Education, Safety.

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