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Chapter on process safety to be developed for OHS Body of Knowledge

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The Safety Institute of Australia and the Australian OHS Education Accreditation Board, together with the Institution of Chemical Engineers Safety Centre, have announced a joint project to develop a chapter on process safety for the OHS Body of Knowledge for Generalist OHS Professionals.

Trish Kerin, director of the IChemE Safety Centre said that the collaboration is “an opportunity to improve the approach to Process Safety generally”, as the content of the chapter will be built around the process safety competences for generalist OHS professions – developed as part of larger process safety competency framework.

The scope and content of the chapter will be produced by a technical panel, comprising process safety engineers and generalist OHS professionals.

Registrar of the Australian OHS Education Accreditation Board and custodian of the OHS Body of Knowledge Pam Pryor said the development was exciting.

“… it recognises the role of the generalist in supporting process safety and will provide a conceptual knowledge base for the generalist, including effective liaison with engineers,” Pam said.

Safety Institute of Australia CEO David Clarke also welcomed the joint work on the new chapter.

“Some generalist OHS professionals have an engineering background. However, analysis of recent process engineering disasters has shown that all generalists operating in high-risk environments should have this foundation knowledge. The ability to identify issues, contribute a unique perspective, and engage with process safety specialists is essential to for managing safety in such environments,” he said.

Work will commence in February, with a workshop for the technical panel. The publication is planned for late 2016.

The Board announced on the same day accreditation of the first Bachelor of Science double degree in OHS and Health Promotion.

This qualification, delivered by Curtin University, offers students the opportunity to develop skills to deliver an expanded role for OHS in the workplace compatible with the current approach to OHS by regulators, Safe Work Australia and a number of industry bodies and employers where health promotion principles are integrated with health and safety.

Pam Pryor, registrar of the Accreditation Board said “in accrediting the double degree the Board required that the study of the second discipline add materially to the graduate outcomes of an entry-level OHS professional in the workplace”.

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AMSJ April 2022