A Structured Approach to Conducting Site Risk Reviews
Additonal authors: Gonzales, T.. Book title: Proceedings of the 58th Conference of Metallurgists Hosting Copper 2019. Chapter: . Chapter title:
Proceedings, Vol. Proceedings of the 58th Conference of Metallurgists Hosting Copper 2019, 2019
The conducting of risk reviews is an essential activity in ensuring safe operating conditions, both during project design phases and for existing facilities. The following paper presents a structured approach to the conducting of risk reviews for existing operations, including descriptions of supporting documentation and guidelines for on-site review activities. The conducting of regular site risk reviews and safety audits is crucial in ensuring the continued safe operation of existing facilities, particularly in the copper industry where numerous processes and unit operations can present catastrophic risks, both in terms of loss of life and financial liability. The structured approach presented aims to provide a logical and comprehensive analysis of risks to align safety-related facilities and procedures with current industry best practice and ensure consistency across multiple client operations.
The production of copper, whether by pyrometallurgical or hydrometallurgical process routes, carries significant inherent safety risks. Production volumes are relatively large, often requiring complex processing routes, multiple production trains and a variety of supporting ancillary facilities. Furthermore, considering the relatively large size of ore reserves, copper production plants can have operational lives well beyond the typical design duration of 20 years. In this context, the conducting of regular risk reviews is essential in ensuring safe operating conditions and aligning facilities with current industry best practices.
Risk reviews and safety audits can take various forms and have various areas of focus. The methodologies and approaches described below relate specifically to catastrophic risks, defined broadly as risks that carry the potential for multiple fatalities and significant financial losses. Focus is given to existing facilities and does not consider the risk-related activities such as hazard and operability (HAZOP) studies conducted during plant design. The structured approach presented aims to provide a guide for effective site- based audits and a logical analysis of risks identified.
Table 1 provides a typical summary of the classification of risk types and the associated consequence categories and descriptions. It illustrates the descriptions of a catastrophic risk in terms of the broad categories of Health & Safety, Environment, Financial, Image & Reputation and Legal & Compliance. In terms of the Financial category, numeric costs ranges are often prescribed depending on the financial characteristics of the specific operation and the associated parent company.
Copper 2019, COM2019