• Question: What safety procedures do you have to carry out as an engineer?

    Asked by Irongillgrunt to Hilly, Lee, Liz, Tadhg, Yasmin on 15 Jun 2015. This question was also asked by 14buchan-k, DarkDestroyer13, till.bob.
    • Photo: Tadhg O'Donovan

      Tadhg O'Donovan answered on 15 Jun 2015:

      Two main Health and Safety issues I deal with on a daily basis are: 1) wearing PPE (Personal Protection Equipment) which normally consists of a lab coat or overalls, goggles and steel toe capped boots and 2) Completing Risk Assessement Forms: when I design something new (experiment or product) I need to think of all the potential risks that are associated with it (burns/electrocution/cuts etc). A good engineer will design to reduce risk – so the risk assessment should be a short document.

    • Photo: Lee Margetts

      Lee Margetts answered on 15 Jun 2015:

      Hi @irongillgrunt – supercomputers are quite safe. Before my current job, I worked on the M25 motorway. Closing lanes on the motorway to do inspections of the road surface required careful planning. The police would slow down the traffic using a rolling road block – a police car in each lane, slowing from 70mph to 30mph. Then contractors would put out the cones. I then worked on my hands and knees taking measurements of the road surface from 10pm to 6am. The only thing separating me from being splatted by an articulated lorry was an orange cone! But I enjoyed the danger money as it paid for me to go to university 🙂

    • Photo: Yasmin Ali

      Yasmin Ali answered on 15 Jun 2015:

      For a new platform, we have to do something called a HAZOP (Hazard and Operability study). The whole team gets together, and we run through each bit of the design and think about what could go wrong.

      For example, we usually have a separator on a platform, a mixture of oil, gas and water flows into this piece of equipment and it does what it says on the tin – separates water, gas and oil from each other! So in a HAZOP, we look at what happens if too much or too little oil flows in? Could it flow out? Is there any chance of explosions…? You get the idea! If we identify anything that is a dangerous, we will design it out.