Major incidents, such as those at Buncefield and Texas City, underline the importance of high standards of control for major hazard risks and the consequences of failure. Investigations into these incidents reveal evidence of a failure to recognise the early warning signs of increasing hazard risks.
In July 2009, CBA signed a commitment on behalf of its member companies to the Principles of Safety Leadership. Since this time, it has been working with UKWA and the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) to develop practical guidelines to help companies to manage hazard risks.
CBA's Director, Peter Newport, said, "We recognised that smaller businesses and warehouses may have limited technical and managerial resources. We were therefore keen to develop a pragmatic framework which recognised these constraints, but nevertheless moved the management of safety beyond the reliance on historical data to key leading indicators."
The new CBA/UKWA guidance provides a six-step programme to creating Safety Performance Leading Indicators (SPLI). It covers the formation of a properly resourced Implementation Team; defining the scope of the SPLI programme; identifying existing risk control systems; establishing the critical risk element in each control system; data collection and reporting; and, finally, the formal review of safety data by senior managers and directors.
Roger Williams, CEO of the UK Warehouse Association, said, "Though the Guidance is focused mainly on sites within the scope of the Control of Major Accident Hazard (COMAH) Regulations, it provides a model of performance measurement which can be easily adapted to other facilities needing to maintain the integrity of their safety systems."
The Guidance provides examples of key indicators relevant to the warehouse sector. As part of the process of developing the Guidance, pilot tests of these Indicators were conducted to ensure their practicality and effectiveness.
The CBA/UKWA guidance has been endorsed by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE). Ian Travers, Head of the HSE's Chemical Industries' Strategy Unit, said, "The critical importance of high standards of safety management and strong leadership is now well understood. Unfortunately, many companies have lost their sense of vulnerability to major incidents and believe that such an event could not happen within their business. The use of key performance indicators can help to provide a clear, accurate, and ongoing picture of the status of control measures needed to prevent major incidents."
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Further information from:
Peter Newport, Director, CBA, 01270 258200 http://www.chemical.org.uk
Roger Williams, CEO, UKWA, 0207 836 5532 http://www.ukwa.org.uk
Notes to Editors
1. For the full text of the CBA/UKWA guidance, go to the CBA website - http://www.chemical.org.uk - or to the UKWA website - http://www.ukwa.org.uk
2. The guidance was launched at a special full-day CBA/UKWA Workshop on Tuesday 16th March 2010 at the Hilton Hotel, Coventry.
3. CBA's distributor member companies handle 2.3 million tonnes of chemicals each year with a market value of almost two billion euros. CBA's logistics companies distribute 6.7 million tonnes of chemicals annually. CBA members, the majority of which are SMEs, are the key industry interface with thousands of downstream chemical users.
4. The UKWA is Britain's leading trade organisation for companies in the third party warehousing sector. The Association has more than 650 members operating almost ten million square metres of warehousing from around 2,000 UK facilities.