Discover more from Net Zero by 2050
BSEE Safety Alert No. 466. Lack of Maintenance to Uninterruptible Power Supply Systems Leads to Failures
BSEE (the United States Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement) issues regular ‘Safety Alerts’ to do with offshore safety. These Alerts are usually based on incidents or near misses. Alert No. 466 is Lack of Maintenance to Uninterruptible Power Supply Systems Leads to Failures. In addition to the lessons learned provided by BSSE, it is useful to evaluate the incidents that they describe in the context of SEMS, their Safety and Environmental Management Systems regulation.
One of BSEE’s conclusions based on their evaluation of a series of incidents was,
UPS systems and maintenance guidelines did not provide adequate information to allow the continued safe and reliable operation of the industrial UPS systems. Specifically, the operating and maintenance instructions did not direct the needed replacement of all relevant components within the UPS system with parts time-limited to less than the design life. Some component examples are batteries, filter capacitors, cooling fans, internal random access memory batteries, power cards, and control cards.
They also recommend,
Evaluate the feasibility of introducing redundancy measures to critical systems, such as backup power generation and uninterruptable power supply, to minimize the risk of future disruptions.
The elements of SEMS are,
Safety and Environmental Information
Hazards Analysis / Job Safety Analysis
Management of Change
Safe Work Practices
Assurance of Quality and Mechanical Integrity of Equipment
Emergency Response and Control
Investigation of Incidents
Audit of Safety and Environmental Management Program Elements
Records and Documentation
Stop Work Authority
Ultimate Work Authority
Reporting of Unsafe Conditions
We have highlighted the Mechanical Integrity element for obvious reasons.
What is less obvious is where introducing extra redundancy fits in — particularly for systems that themselves contribute to system reliability. We have highlighted the Hazards Analysis element, but the analysis goes beyond traditional techniques. It requires the use of fault tree analysis, or something similar.
To receive new posts consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.