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PSM: Risk Assessment Using Bowties

August 22, 2017 | 10:00 - 11:00 am CDT

The Chemical Center for Process Safety (CCPS) issues books that have become the de facto best practice for process safety management (PSM) globally. A new CCPS concept book prepared with the UK Energy Institute will be issued in 2017 to standardize the use of the Bowtie Method in risk management. The goal is to improve the consistency and quality of bowties and so reduce the risks in operating environments to avoid major accidents.

Our webinar presenter has been actively involved on the committee writing the new concept book, Guidelines for Barrier Risk Management (Bow Tie Analysis). This webinar will highlight the publication's key recommendations, assumptions and improvements, including:

Terms of Reference:
  • to include definition of the audience (frontline operators, local management to corporate risk managers, senior management and/or regulators), development of the bowties and, most importantly, long-term maintenance of bowties
Bowties and Barriers:
  • Must be "effective, independent and auditable"
  • Are either active or passive
  • If active, must have separate elements to detect what is going wrong, decide on what to do about it and to act to completely stop the threat from progressing further
  • Are defined as: Active Hardware, Active Human, Active Hardware+Human, Passive Hardware or Continuous Hardware
  • Degradation factors: barriers may fail or degrade for various reasons
  • Degradation factor safeguards are in place to stop the barriers from failing
  • Meta-data associated with barriers are standardized as barrier owner, efficiency, reliability and current status

All of the above is illustrated using a bowtie to prevent overfill of a gasoline storage tank (e.g. Buncefield)



Mark Manton

Mark Manton is Principal Consultant for ABS Group based in Warrington, United Kingdom (UK). He has 30 years' experience in the oil and gas industry. After acquiring a PhD in Chemical Engineering at MIT, Manton spent 25 years with Shell in roles located in Amsterdam, The Hague, Bintulu (Malaysia), Rouen (France), Chester (UK) and London. His last role at Shell was as Process Safety Manager at Shell's Stanlow refinery. During that time he was part of, and for two (2) years chaired, the UK Petroleum Industry Association's (UKPIA's) Process Safety Leadership Network, the main interface between the sector and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Environmental Agency (EA). This also included active involvement in working groups covering Human Factors, Buncefield follow-up and environmental risk assessments, providing extensive experience working directly with the UK HSE to demonstrate that the residual risks have been reduced to ALARP.

Manton has provided consulting and training services to Shell, the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, KPC, Syngenta, Takreer, Valero, Wood Group, Calor, Slovnaft, Hexcel, Evonik, Merck, SBM Offshore and GKN. He is an active member of the committee writing the CCPS/EI concept book on Risk Management using Bow Ties and has presented papers at conferences organized by IChemE and AiChE.

About ABS Group

ABS Group of Companies, Inc. (ABS Group) and its operating subsidiaries provide risk management solutions and certification services worldwide that help clients address the safety, integrity, quality and environmental efficiency of critical assets and operations. Headquartered in Spring, Texas, ABS Group operates with more than 1200 professionals across the globe, serving the marine and offshore, oil, gas and chemical, government, power and energy and industrial sectors. ABS Group is a subsidiary of ABS (, a leading marine and offshore classification society.

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