Structures & Siting

Occupied Buildings

The UK Health & Safety Executive (HSE) offers guidance of the design of process plant Structures with the following introduction:

Buildings and structures are provided on major hazard plant for a number of purposes. Buildings may serve to simply protect the plant or control systems from weather conditions or may be provided as accommodation or shelter. More importantly they may be part of the overall containment strategy i.e. to prevent, control or mitigate major accident events. Other structures are provided as support for plant either within buildings or externally. Failures of buildings and structures closely associated with major hazards plant may directly impinge upon the plant itself thus initiating a hazardous event. It is therefore clearly important that buildings and structures are designed to withstand all foreseeable loadings and operational extremes throughout the life of the plant.

The HSE also offers guidance on Plant Layout (siting) to address the following factors:

  • Prevent, limit and/or mitigate escalation of adjacent events (domino);
  • Ensure safety within on-site occupied buildings;
  • Control access of unauthorised personnel;
  • Facilitate access for emergency services.

Guidance on this topic is available from the UK Chemical Industries Association (CIA) occupied Buildings Risk Assessment (OBRA) and US American Petroleum Institute (API) Recommended Practices 752 (Permanent Buildings) & 753 (Portable Buildings):

Chemicals Industries Association OBRA
API 752 (Permanent)
API 753 (Portable)

This topic relates to the following PSM elements:

Risk Assessment
Emergency Preparedness