- In a performing repair or preventive maintenance work, hazardous conditions may result if the equipment has not been prepared for the job or if the job is not performed properly. There must be assurance that the equipment is safe to work on. A management system is needed to control the implementation of required maintenance safety procedures.
- Any maintenance, whether an actual repair or preventive in nature, should be initiated through a formal system. A written order system is often used to document the work to be done and to facilitate management control of maintenance work. A system for organizing the priority of work requests should be adopted, with work requests that have safety implications given special priority.
- Where special precautions are needed to perform the work safely, they should be identified on the work order. Certain types of work may require special work permits such as: line break, hot work, confined space and excavation.
- Each permit should have a set of procedures that defines the requirements under which the permit is issued. The permit should be issued by authorized, qualified personnel with this responsibility clearly assigned. The authorizing person should sign the permits to promote accountability. The management system should address how responsibility will be transferred between shifts when the work extends beyond the time when the original maintenance crew leaves.
- A set of safe work practices should be developed to support the work request system. These practices should include: equipment isolation or locking and tagging; plugging or capping open-ended valves; lifting of equipment over active process lines and confined space entry procedures.
- After maintenance has completed the work, a final check should be required by qualified operations personnel as a control to ensure that the work requested has been satisfactorily completed, and that all equipment has been returned to an operable condition. Assurance of quality should include ensuring that the proper spare parts are used and that the work performed meets applicable standards and codes.
- Reference: CCPS(1989) Guidelines for Technical Management of Chemical Process Safety