Industrial Sites: Emergency Preparedness is Integral to Operations
Industries employ many different processes involving a wide range of different raw materials, waste products and final products. The hazards encountered are numerous and diverse. Site staff must be prepared to respond to fires of flammable liquid and compressed gases, hazardous material releases, rescues, security breaches and medical emergencies.
As part of their daily operations industrial sites will maintain robust and multi-faceted emergency response programs. Sites will partake in numerous activities to reduce the risk their facility, personnel and the public face from the hazards posed. Some of this mitigation includes;
Site Design and Pre-modification
This involves planning the proper layout of facilities and reviewing material selection. Research should be done to try and substitute extremely toxic chemicals with safer ones. Less chemicals should be stored where possible as a reduction in inventory will automatically mean less damage if an accident is to occur.
Chemical Risk Assessment
Chemicals on site are assessed based on compatibility, flammability, toxicity, explosion hazards and storage.
Audit is a systematic and, wherever possible, independent examination to determine whether safety activities and related results conform to planned arrangements and whether these arrangements are implemented effectively and are suitable to achieve the site's policy and objectives.
A comprehensive risk analysis indicating the impact of risks and emergency response capabilities to respond to the facilitie's risks should be recoreded. This can be conducted by local municipal departments as well as private organizations.
Proper training of employees and protective services should be conducted and recorded. Sites should also carry out multiple drills and exercises to ensure this training is relevant and tested.
The public should cooperate with tankers and heavy duty vehicles to avoid accidents and allow for the shortest possible transportation time of dangerous goods. Special times should be selected for transportation.
Everyone should be aware of potential dangers and informed of safety measures. Information sheets should be readily available to the public.
Sites should be kitted out with the relevant equipment to respond to the risks posed. This should be regularly inspected and maintained in a state of readiness.
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