CSB hearings to examine safety indicators, Macondo incident

The US Chemical Safety Board will hold public hearings July 23-24 in Houston on effective safety measurements in high-hazard industries, including development of leading and lagging indicators. It also plans to release preliminary findings from its investigation of the 2010 Macondo deepwater well incident and oil spill.

The July 23 hearing will focus on refining and petrochemicals, CSB said. It will feature a presentation on the board’s evaluation of American Petroleum Institute Recommend Practice 754 on refining and petrochemical process safety indicators, which the federal agency said resulted from a recommendation following its investigation of explosions in 2005 at BP PLC’s Texas City, Tex., refinery that killed 15 people and injured 180 others.

CSB, which investigates process industry accidents but does not issue citations, said its inquiry found that safety indicators to prevent major accidents had not been used to improve performance. Lessons learned from other high-hazard industries with advanced indicator programs also will be discussed, it said.

On July 24, CSB staff members will discuss preliminary findings on the use of safety indicators and major accident prevention measures from its investigation of Macondo. It has conducted numerous interviews and examined tens of thousands of documents from 15 companies in this inquiry, it said.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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