• Developing better procedures

    2009 - Chemical manufacture

    The client had started writing new operating procedures, but asked Andy for his opinion.  Whilst the procedures looked good, using a standard template incorporating photos, he realised that they were tending to be longer than necessary and would take a considerable effort to develop and maintain.

    Andy worked with the client to develop a set of new templates for different types of task, and to create some examples of each. In general terms the template for low criticality tasks was a one page overview, whilst a full step-by-step procedure with sign-offs throughout was required only for high criticality tasks. A system for assigning criticality was developed and Andy produced a 'procedure for writing procedures' for the client to ensure the agreed principles were adhered to in the future.

  • Development of an operators' manual

    2005 - Oil products, Bitumen

    The client had recognised that the operating procedures for the site had become out of date and that rewriting them in their current style was unlikely to represent current best practice. Andy was asked to assist in implementing an improved approach to procedures. Working with the site, Andy developed the principle of an operators' manual. This would provide the basis for operator training and contain all the necessary procedures, job aids and other documents to be used by operators. The idea being that only information relevant to the operators was included so that it would always be easy to find what was needed.

  • Improving operating procedures at an onshore gas terminal

    2009 - Gas terminal

    Andy was engaged by the client to provide a range of human factors support.  A significant part of this was the development of improved operating procedures.  This involved developing a comprehensive task list, ranked using a systematic method of assigning criticality.  Detailed procedures, developed using task analysis were produced for the 10% of tasks considered to be most critical.  The procedures were considered to be far superior to the previous procedures because they were shorter, clearer and more accurate.

  • Initiating a human factors program at COMAH site

    2008 - Waste incinerator

    The client had been asked by their inspector about their plans to address human factors within their COMAH report. Andy was asked to present two one day courses to staff from a number of sites as a general introduction. Also, he facilitated a number of workshops where critical tasks were subject to task analysis and human HAZOP. The result was some much improved procedures and a much better understanding of the human factors risks. The client adopted the techniques as a key part of developing procedures and managing change. They found that the training Andy had provided had quickly allowed them to address human factors with minimal support.

  • Review of how procedures are addressing the needs of COMAH

    2006 -Oil Refinery/Petrochemical

    The client had recognised that in certain circumstance that procedures are a key risk control measure. As part of preparation for COMAH it was necessary to demonstrate that the actual procedures in place were covering all the requirements to minimise the likelihood of major accidents and to ensure mitigation. Due his previous involvement in procedures at the site, Andy was asked to review the current situation.

    Working to a tight timescale, Andy directed an internal audit of procedures and COMAH carried out by the client's personnel. He then visited every department to carry out his own 'sample' audit to act as a cross reference. This combined approach meant Andy had information to demonstrate that whilst minimum requirements were being achieved, there was an underlying problem that meant the link between procedures and COMAH was not being made in an effective manner. As a result he was able to recommend a change of emphasis in the way tasks were analysed that would have multiple benefits of focusing procedures onto major hazards and improving the understanding of people who use the procedures.