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October 2019

The Mary Kay O’Connor 22nd Annual International Symposium in College Station, Texas is upon us once again! We hope to see you there October 22nd – 24th, 2019.  You can find us at booth #13 at the Texas A&M Hotel and Conference Center. We will exhibit our broad scope of process safety and risk management services, including videos of hazards testing at our two large research and testing facilities in Texas!

We are also pleased to present two technical presentations during this conference:

Tuesday, October 22, 3:45 pm: Track II, Learning From Incidents

Karen Vilas will present the paper, “Are biases toward the recent past causing us to unintentionally expose personnel to increased levels of risk?”

This paper focuses on the consideration of an unbiased approach to proactively addressing risk rather than reactively allowing cognitive biases to drive process safety culture and personnel risk management solutions.  With VCEs the primary cause of recent industrial accidents resulting in fatalities, we have seen a rise in the availability of blast resistant structures which have allowed personnel to move back in closer to processing areas.  This paper suggests through a case study that the availability of blast resistant buildings may result in increased levels of personnel risk from other hazard types, specifically impinged jet fires and toxic exposure.

Wednesday, October 23, 1:15 pm: Track III, Risk Assessment

Thomas Mander will be presenting a paper titled, “Consideration of Non-Structural Internal Debris in Siting of Blast Resistant Modules”.

While the structural capacity of a BRM may protect occupants from external hazards, local (wall and roof) and global (sliding) deflections and accelerations of a BRM can lead to non-structural internal debris hazards.  High-velocity items impacting building occupants can increase the occupant vulnerability if not properly addressed.  This paper provides insight into the hazards associated with interior finish-out and wall/ceiling-mounted items commonly observed in BRMs.

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