Topic: Applications

ILI vs DA—The Risk View

A rather common issue these days is decision making involving comparisons between In Line Inspection (ILI) vs Direct Assessment (DA, and, in particular, External Corrosion DA or ECDA).  You may need to research these techniques, if not already familiar to you, since we will assume the reader is fairly familiar with both. Both are acceptable […]

Pipeline Reliability–Service Interruption As ‘Failure’

Generally, a pipeline’s reliability includes consideration of all leak/rupture scenarios PLUS all other scenarios that could prevent the system from performing its intended function.  With the normal ‘intended function’ being something like:  deliver product to point B from point A at specified flow rates, pressures, temperatures, and product quality, a reliability failure occurs when any […]

The economics of acceptable risk

While avoiding the many nuances of ‘acceptable’ vs ‘tolerable’ risk and ‘How safe is safe enough?’ issues, let’s scratch the surface of setting, moving towards, or sustaining a target risk level. We begin with a premise that risk reduction is sought for some asset or collection of assets. We explore the risk reduction opportunities with […]

Due Diligence—Risk Costs of Asset Ownership

In this column, we occasionally highlight applications of risk assessment that are perhaps less apparent to some.  Since risk permeates almost all industrial endeavors, it is not surprising that risk understanding is or should be an essential part of many types of decision-making.  We have already covered risk assessment in incident investigation and as a […]

The PHMSA has recently criticised how Integrity Management Plan (IMP) risk assessments (RAs) for pipelines are being conducted. Do you also see problems?

There is a wide range of practice among pipeline operators right now. Some RA is admittedly in need of improvement, not yet meeting the intent of the IMP regulation. However, I believe that is not due to lack of good intention, but rather incomplete understanding of risk. Risk is a relatively new concept, and is […]

Risk Assessment and Accident Investigation

Incident investigation is both a useful input into a risk assessment and a consumer of risk assessment results. In the former, learnings from the incident are almost always relevant to other portions of other pipelines. In the latter, especially when responsibility (blame) is to be assigned, what should have been known, via risk assessment, prior […]