We operate in an environment that contains hazards. Risk assessment is concerned with determining the likelihood that people, property or the environment will be harmed by these hazards. Safety management is concerned with eliminating, reducing or protecting against these hazards so that the risk is reduced to an acceptable level.

Some analysis is required to determine the specific hazards and risks. This analysis requires understanding of the tools and techniques needed.

For complex systems, fault tree analysis is a rigorous method of quantifying the probability of failures and thus the probability of a dangerous event. It can also help to verify that a modification intended to reduce risk, provides the required level of integrity. This is particularly useful when applied to safety related systems as defined by BS EN 61508.

There are many reasons to study reliability, for example, maintenance analysis, risk assessment and determination of safety integrity levels (SIL). These techniques require knowledge of how things fail and at what frequency. Experienced engineers and technicians come to understand these failures but to capture their knowledge, some system of recording faults in sufficient detail is required for objective analysis.

Sources of failure data include interviewing engineers and technicians, also published failure statistics, but by far the most valuable source is failure data generated from the organisation's own records. However, to be of use, accurate information about the number of assets in operation, their operating life and information about individual failures is required to provide confidence in the numbers calculated.

Fault reporting

GVC Asset Integrity Ltd can help you design and implement effective fault reporting tools using simple technology, and which can be achieved at low cost. We can show you how to design the interface so that only valid and accurate information is entered and the data structure can be based on information derived from Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA) carried out previously. This makes completing fault reports fast, uncomplicated and accurate. This mechanism also enables automatic and instant calculation of mean time between failures (mtbf), which becomes more refined every time a fault is reported.

We are also able to provide an on-line fault reporting system, which can be hosted on our server or on your own Intranet. Alternatively, the system can be tailored to a desktop environment.

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