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THERMAL POWER PLANT PROJECT

8. RISK CHARACTERIZATION

During the initial stages of the HAZOP study, HAZOP chairman establishes a risk-ranking matrix with
severity rankings and frequency rankings to allow for a qualitative assessment of the consequences of
each hazard. This matrix allows the HAZOP team to screen each identified hazard and to assign a
ranking and recommend suitable measures to eliminate/mitigate high ranked hazards.

To accomplish this qualitative assessment of risk, each hazard event is ranked through a team
consensus judgment in two ways: first, deciding the severity of the consequences of the event, and
second, deciding the expected frequency or likelihood of the scenario resulting in the consequences
identified for the hazard. Tables 4 and 5 present the consequence severity and event likelihood used in
ranking the hazards that will be identified in a HAZOP study. Figure 2 portrays how the relationship
between severity and likelihood rankings is used to assign risk rankings to each hazard, and risk rank
definitions used in ranking the hazards identified in a HAZOP Study.

Scenarios that might have a significant impact on workers and the public (i.e., risk ranks of 3 or 4) are
evaluated in a separate effort to identify procedural and design changes that will reduce the likelihood
and/or severity of the scenario or eliminate the scenario. This maintains the goal of hazard
identification during the HAZOP meetings, without diversion to determine specific consequence details
and possible mitigating effects. Table 6 presents risk rank criteria.

Table 4. Assignment of Severity Categories


Severity People Assets Environment Reputation
Slight damage
Slight health effect/
1 (less than US Slight effect Slight impact
injury
$100K)
Minor health effect/ Minor damage
2 Minor effect Limited impact
injury (US $100K ~ 1M)
Major health effect/ Localized damage
3 Localized effect Considerable impact
injury (US $1M ~ 10M)
Major damage
Disabilities/
4 (greater than US Major effect National impact
Fatalities
$10M)

Table 5. Assignment of Likelihood Categories


Likelihood Description
1 Very unlikely; once in more than 10 years
2 Not likely; once in 5-10 years
3 May occur; once in 1-5 years
4 Likely; once in 1 year

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Likelihood
1 2 3 4
Severity
1 1 1 2 2
2 1 2 2 3
3 2 2 3 4
4 2 3 4 4

Figure 2. Risk Ranking Matrix

Table 6. Risk Decision Criteria


Risk Rank Description

1 Acceptable as is - no action is necessary (Low risk)

Acceptable with controls - verify that procedures, controls, and safeguards are in
2
place (Medium risk)
Undesirable - should be mitigated to risk rank 2 or lower within reasonable period
3
(High risk)
Unacceptable - should be mitigated to risk rank 2 or lower as soon as possible
4
(Highest risk)

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9. ATTACHMENT
9.1. HAZOP Worksheet Template

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