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Blog 2017-09-07T16:27:27+00:00

Master the Box

December 14th, 2018|0 Comments

“Constraints inspire creativity.”  — Christopher Isaac “Biz”Stone, co-founder of Twitter I once asked a young engineer if he knew where the phrase, “Think Outside the Box,” came [...]

Options: Reducing Risk

December 6th, 2018|0 Comments

“To have constructive conversations about … options, one needs to take a calm look at the numbers.”  — David J.C. MacKay In addition to the usual hazards [...]

Check Valves: Why We Do the Things We Do

November 19th, 2018|0 Comments

“To many, total abstinence is easier than perfect moderation.”  —St. Augustine “Check valves are worthless.” Every engineer I know has heard that. Many believe it. Quite a [...]

Not Likely

November 15th, 2018|0 Comments

“None of this will be important if there’s a zombie apocalypse. But how likely is that?”  —Jason Vladescu I was once at a conference where I overheard [...]

Things We Worry About: Plane Crashes

November 8th, 2018|0 Comments

“You are now statistically more likely to be elected president of the United States in your lifetime than you are to die in a plane crash. What [...]

Four Key Points: Applying the Meer Decision to Flammable Storage

November 1st, 2018|0 Comments

“Unlike Humpty Dumpty, the Secretary may not give a word whatever meaning she chooses.”  —Judge Richard DeBenedetto When the Meer Corporation took the bold and relatively unheard-of [...]

Caps and Plugs: Why We Do The Things We Do

October 18th, 2018|0 Comments

“Chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.”  —Warren Buffett Caps and plugs serve no process function. It [...]

Things We Worry About: In-plant Derailments

October 11th, 2018|0 Comments

“To invent the train is to invent the rail accident of derailment.”  —Paul Virilio When most of us think of train derailments, we think of horrendous events, [...]

A New Enforcement Program: Ammonia and Ammonium Nitrate

October 4th, 2018|0 Comments

“This program is an enforcement tool to emphasize the obligations under existing OSHA standards,”  – Kimberly Stille, OSHA Region VII Administrator When the West Fertilizer ammonium nitrate [...]

Operator Stress: How Does it Impact Safety?

September 27th, 2018|0 Comments

“I’ve never seen a tombstone that read ‘Here lies such and such, he was a really great asset to his company.’”  Unknown Have you ever tried to [...]

Cracks in the Bridge: FIU Part 2

September 20th, 2018|0 Comments

“…obviously some repairs or whatever will have to be done but from a safety perspective we don’t see that there’s any issue there, so we’re not concerned [...]

Things We Worry About: In-plant Truck Releases

September 13th, 2018|0 Comments

“It’s no good crying over spilt milk, because all the forces of the universe are bent on spilling it.”  —William Somerset Maugham Imagine a tank truck shows [...]

Arkema: A Ham Sandwich

September 6th, 2018|0 Comments

“The district attorney could get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich if he wanted to.” Judge Sol Wachtler Arkema is a ham sandwich. A year [...]

Before You Hear It on the News

August 30th, 2018|0 Comments

“I just wanted to call you and let you know before you heard it on the news.”  —Mike Schmidt When we were newlyweds, my husband once called [...]

That’s Hazardous? Process Safety in Unexpected Places

August 23rd, 2018|0 Comments

“If you do not expect the unexpected you will not find it, for it is not to be reached by search or trail.” –Heraclitus I work for [...]

Defeating Safety: 3 Reasons People Put Protective Devices Out of Commission and What to Do About Them

August 16th, 2018|0 Comments

“When defeat comes, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound, rebuild those plans, and set sail once more toward your coveted goal.”  —Napoleon [...]

Breaking Glass: Facility Siting

August 2nd, 2018|0 Comments

“I love the sound of breaking glass.”  Nick Lowe When I was a kid, the song, “I Love the Sound of Breaking Glass,” was on the radio. [...]

Audits and Inspections: What’s the Difference?

July 26th, 2018|0 Comments

“There are no secrets to success.  It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.”  Colin Powell Before I began working in process safety, [...]