Re: [SystemSafety] NYTimes: The Next Accident Awaits

From: C. Michael Holloway < >
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 2014 09:20:41 -0500

The US Chemical Safety Board (CSB) draft report about the Chevron 2012 Pipe Rupture and Fire proposed an overhaul of the regulatory system for the refinery industry that would have started a goal-based approach to regulation:

The proposal was rejected by the CSB by a 2-1 vote:

The public comments received on the draft report are available here:

Among the interesting comments is one from the United Steelworks Local 5:

"We understand that the 'Safety Case' approach is not perfect, nor will it be an easy transition, but we do feel that given the FULL support and buy-in of the State Regulators, The Industry, and the Workers this system puts us in a better position to operate the refineries safer."

And the CSB's responses to the comments are here:

Also available from the CSB web site is a page called "Working Papers on the Safety Case Regulatory Model and its Attributes":

Michael Holloway
(Speaking for myself, not NASA)

On 1/30/14 8:50 AM, Martyn Thomas wrote:
> I'm a non-exec Director at the UK's Health and Safety Laboratory
> ( We carry out the basic research that underpins the UK's
> regulation of occupational health and safety, ranging from reducing
> accidents on construction sites and improving the tethering of loads on
> lorries, through to reproducing and analysing major explosions (such as
> Buncefield - and
> destruction-testing the physical integrity of tankers and rolling-stock.
> We also undertake commercial work that uses our unusual experimental and
> analysis capabilities and very strong science base.
> The UK is unusual in having a goal-based, safety-case regulatory regime and
> a regulator (HSE) with its own expert research establishment (HSL). We are
> getting an increasing number of approaches from Governments in the Far and
> Middle East who see the UK's good performance in occupational Health and
> Safety and who want to investigate setting up similar goal-based regulation.
> Maybe there is something in the HSE/HSL approach that the US chemical
> industry could benefit from.
> Regards
> Martyn
> Martyn Thomas CBE FREng
> On 29/01/2014 22:05, Peter Bernard Ladkin wrote:
>> A worthy opinion piece from the Chair of the US Chemical Safety Board. Note his suggestion that identifying hazards and mitigation is just well-established best practice. I can say from experience that it is not yet in Europe in all industries with safety aspects, even though he holds Europe up as having a factor of three fewer chemical accidents as the US.
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The System Safety Mailing List
systemsafety_at_xxxxxx Received on Thu Jan 30 2014 - 15:20:56 CET

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