Created on February 21, 2017

For us working in Oil & Gas and/or Petrochemical plants are usually having a good awareness of safety, and in the context of this NOTE OF TODAY specifically about process safety. In our daily activities, we demonstrate strong commitment in delivering good process safety performance, starting from the beginning of the lifecycle of the plant, usually done through several Safety Studies carried out when the plant is being designed, constructed, commissioned, operated, and finally decommissioned.

One of common risk addressed in those safety studies are “Fire & Explosion Risk” related with the flammable material dealt in the process, where one of them are “LIQUID FUEL” such as gasoline, diesel fuel, condensate, etc. Those liquid fuel, which is considered a hazardous material due to its flammability properties, where ever they are stored and/or processed, will pose similar fire & explosion risk to the surrounding. Either they are stored INSIDE THE PLANT or OUTSIDE THE PLANT in PUBLIC AREA.

One may say that when they are stored in PUBLIC AREA, the RISK MAY BE BIGGER because of the following (compared to the condition inside the plant area):

  1. Probability of people exist in the area is higher and less controlled,
  2. Control of potential ignition source is much-less.
  3. Process safety awareness of stakeholders is much-less (in design, construction, and operation of the facility)


Based on the above background, as Process Safety Practitioner, I usually take a closer look to hazardous facilities when they are located in public area, such as DIESEL FUEL STORAGE in a public mall. One of them is shown in attached picture for this NOTE OF TODAY. The picture is taken on 7 February 2017 in one of Public Modern Supermarket in BSD City area.

If you’re a process safety practitioner, you will spot some defects related with fire & explosion risk posed by that DIESEL FUEL STORAGE tanks.

  • Fuel Tanks located exactly in the path way of vehicle while moving down a steep slope!!! No physical protection against hit by vehicle when driver is not focused.
  • No relevant safety signs in the area related with hazard of FUEL.
  • Are the venting lines too long?
  • Two Tanks positioned side by side. Potential for BLEVE (Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosions).
  • No bund-wall to contain potential leak/spills while vehicle (potential ignition source) frequently passing by.
  • No fire water hydrant system observed surrounding the tanks.
  • Are the tanks located properly – inside a closed area in the vicinity of car parking space?

And, if you see more, please add to the list…. your observation of other defects or dangerous condition related with that pictures. I have seen conditions similar to the above in many other public areas.


Here are the things that I am doing to help reducing the above risk from happening.

  • Sharing this NOTE OF TODAY for all of you, thus increasing our awareness about the risk in our surrounding, not only in the PLANT but also in the PUBLIC AREA.
  • Communicating the risk to the management of the facilities of that public area, when I have the access to them, with the expectation they will take some measures for improvement.


“Process Safety” is APPLICABLE, NOT ONLY in the plant, BUT ALSO in public area!!! And we have our part and our responsibility to play in reducing the risk.

Lukmanul Hakim

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