AEGIS member companies are focused on making the appropriate changes in their operations to protect employees, vendors and customers from the rapidly spreading pandemic, while maintaining all critical services, including electric power generation, natural gas and energy supplies, and water.
These conditions create operational challenges that must be addressed to ensure adequate and reliable services. There are many considerations and activities to juggle. Developing a strategy for protecting assets requires a review of each site’s risks, threats, vulnerabilities and target areas, and the consequences of each. Planned and routine maintenance may be deferred due to the current situation. It may become necessary to defer certain testing and maintenance activities due to expected staffing shortages. With the expectation of resource shortages, it may be prudent to review staffing needs with an eye toward either limiting the amount or personnel needed per shift or mobilizing more shift crews. At the same time, it’s important to ensure operating procedures are available, and that routine operational testing instructions are clear, work will be performed by qualified personnel, and their training is current.
These activities will require prioritization to ensure safe and reliable operation during the pandemic, while minimizing any loss potential. Here are some items to consider:
- Emergency Response Planning. If plant staffing is reduced or responsibilities are reorganized, ensure that the emergency response plan is revised and all employees are trained for the new conditions. If any outside agencies are referenced in your plan, then they should have the revised and latest plan in their possession.
- The reliable operation of fire protection systems and equipment continues to be critical. With restricted access for outside vendors that provide inspection, testing and maintenance (ITM) of fire protection systems and equipment, certain activities must still be performed to ensure that fire protection systems can operate as required during an emergency condition.
- The operational condition of each fire protection system should be verified on a daily basis or preferably once per shift.
- Continue weekly run test of fire pumps started by pressure drop.
- If plant personnel previously completed certain aspects of the ITM program, they should continue.
- Critical operational testing should continue. This may include the exercising of steam turbine valves and pressure drop testing of emergency lube/seal oil pump supply.
- Deviation from written procedures for testing and maintenance should happen only after careful consideration. This also applies for operational procedures and testing.
- Skeleton crews and less experienced (emergency) relief operators need to work within their training and operational abilities. Review procedures to ensure clarity under these unusual circumstances. This includes essential operating procedures during activities such as start-ups or shutdowns.
If you would like additional information or pandemic-specific support from AEGIS Loss Control Property Operations, please contact one of our team members:
Joshua M. Fleischer
National Property Manager
Loss Control Property Operations
Machinery Technical Lead
Loss Control Property Operations
|Juan P. Toribio
Loss Control Operations