Process, Hardware, and Systems Inspections and Testing

Prior to commissioning a new process, replacing equipment or restarting after a shutdown, a pre-startup safety review should be conducted. The pre-startup review is a final check of both the equipment and operating procedures to assure that all elements are in place and functional. The review team should verify that all safety items identified in prior design and hazard reviews have been adequately addressed; that operating, maintenance and emergency procedures have been written; that operator training is complete; that a PM program is in place; that all equipment falling under the PM program has been identified and that a system for managing change is in place. The latest revision of the piping and instrumentation drawings should be reviewed, followed y a field inspection. The review team should consist of representatives from design, production, construction, maintenance and any others as appropriate.
The field inspection provides insights into the design and operation of the equipment that may not be apparent from a review of the drawings. To assure that all issues are considered, a checklist should be used during the field inspection. The checklist should cover such issues as:
    1. Protection of small-bore lines and fittings from external impact
    2. Adequate support of piping
    3. Location and identification of critical safety systems and equipment, emergency shutdowns, fire protection equipment, safety showers and breathing apparatus
    4. Location of vents and drains
    5. Means of safe egress from an area in case of emergency
    6. Means of access to valves
    7. Proper electrical classification
    8. Proper operation of critical alarm, interlock and emergency shutdown systems
    9. Test and test results from pre-startup checks
    The inspection should be made by staff familiar with the design as well as staff familiar with operations. During the inspection, one individual should be assigned to document all items found by the inspection team. The resulting list of items should be prioritized to identify which items must be corrected prior to commissioning, prior to starup, or those that can be corrected at a later time. Appropriate controls should be in place to verify that all items are completed at the required times, and may include another field inspection.
    There should be procedures for the testing of key pieces of equipment prior to the introduction of hazardous materials into the process. Testing requirement should be described in startup procedures, and responsibility for completing these tests should be assigned. Completion of equipment tests should be documented with records of the startup.
    Upon completion of the review, the tam should issue a report identifying any deficiencies that must be corrected prior to startup. Based on this report, a team of plant management staff should be made responsible for approving the facilities for startup. A completed sign-off sheet by all these individuals should be the final document to allow hazardous materials into the process.
    Reference: CCPS(1989) Guidelines for Technical Management of Chemical Process Safety

    Management/Mechanical Integrity/Maintenance Procedures