If your facility
manages its operations to stay just under the thresholds that would
require process safety management (PSM) or under EPAís Clean Air Act
112r risk management planning (RMP) are you home free? Is it appropriate
for your facility to look at its operation to see where there is the
possibility of adversely affecting your employees or your neighbors,
even though the government doesnít explicitly require it? Does it make
good business sense to search out potential liabilities and control for
Your company has a
contingency plan in case a computer hard drive crashes.
Your company understands that hard drives crash.
Does the government require you to have this plan?
Does your company have
comparable contingency plans for environmental and safety incidents? Do
you look at materials that are close to the regulatory thresholds? What
about someone that uses a high concentration of a certain acid in its
operation but is not quite subject to RMP.
Should this company be aware and manage the risk of dealing with
this material? What if the storage container was at the fence line, next
to a school playground?
What if the container wasnít diked? Could there be a spill? Could this
lower concentration still affect neighbors if it were to spill? Could it
affect employees? The
company is not subject to the rule. Should the company skip the steps to
properly manage this risk?
PSM and RMP include a general duty clause that requires facilities to
manage risk, independent of whether they meet the threshold amounts. The
enforcement section uses these general duty clauses to Monday-morning
quarterback incidents after the fact. What should a company have done,
but didnít? Independent
of the regulatory framework, Hands & Associates, Inc. advises
facilities to manage environmental and safety risks as a normal part of