Functional Safety

Meet the Team

PM Group have a team of experienced TUV certified engineers, who using a lifecycle approach can ensure your compliance with IEC61508 and 61511.

A Functional Safety Lifecycle Plan is the key to managing your Functional Safety responsibilities. It is a statement of intent to use standard BS EN 61508 and its associated sector implementation standards (e.g. BS EN 61511) as a lifecycle method of achieving Functional Safety. The development and execution of the functional safety lifecycle is overseen by a Functional Safety management team usually comprising client and specialist engineers (such as PM Group).

The Functional Safety Management Team ensures that, for each new plant and plant modification, hazards are identified, risks evaluated and the appropriate risk management measures determined. In addition to the functional safety management team, a Functional Safety Assessment Team will be established, whose duty is to undertake and record formal functional safety assessments at critical stages in the lifecycle of the process/facility concerned.

PM Group also offer a range of Functional Safety training courses, for more information on the training we offer please click the below link.

Functional Safety Training >

Key Factors

1. What is Functional Safety

A safety system is functionally safe if random, common cause and systematic failures do not lead to malfunctioning of the safety system resulting in:

  • Injury or death of humans
  • Spills to the environment
  • Loss of equipment or production

2. Who/What Does Functional Safety Apply To

  • Chemicals, Tank Storage, Pharmaceutical, Non-Nuclear Power, Utilities Industry, Oil and Gas Production and Exploration, Bio Energy Plants
  • Safety Instrumented Systems – normally pre certified/approved/assessed
  • Legacy Safety Instrumented Systems
  • Pipe to Pipe Standard (Sensor to Final Element

3. The Benefits of Functional Safety Lifecycle Compliance

  • Demonstrates compliance with regulations
  • Reduces the number of false and unnecessary alarms and nuisance trips
  • Protects your licence to operate
  • Develops safer processes
  • Reduces operating costs
  • Increases efficiency and profitability
  • Raises stakeholder and public confidence
  • Allows you to concentrate on core business activity whilst ensuring compliance

4. Challenges in Achieving Functional Safety

The challenge is to design a system in such a way as to prevent dangerous failures or to control them when they arise from:

  • Incorrect specifications of hardware or software
  • Omissions in the safety requirements specification
  • Random hardware failure mechanisms
  • Systematic hardware failure mechanisms
  • Software errors
  • Common cause failures
  • Human error
  • Environmental influences
  • Supply system voltage disturbances

5. Achieving Functional Safety - How PM Group Can Help

PM Group recommends a life-cycle approach to bringing your systems and policies into line with the standards. This may typically involve the following:

  • Identifying the hazards and safety functions through a process of function reviews, formal HAZOPs and Accident Reviews
  • A survey of existing installations
  • Undertaking a gap analysis on existing protective systems
  • Reviewing existing site policies and standards against the requirements of BS EN 61508/61511
  • Provision of a safety requirement specification, (SRS) using risk analysis & assessment
  • Safety Integrity Level (SIL) and Environmental Integrity Level (EIL) determination using appropriate methods e.g. LOPA (Layer of Protection Analysis)
  • Design of SIL/EIL rated loops
  • Verification of existing safety instrumented functions (SIF)
  • Verification of SIL/EIL system design
  • Review/design safety systems to meet the required SIL/EIL levels
  • Determination of maintenance and testing regimes