The site-wide pressure safety program is designed to assist researchers in conducting their work with pressurized systems in a manner that assures safety, yet provides for the flexibility necessary to perform the research activities. We provide training, consultation, design and construction, and work authorizations as described in detail below.
Training: all LBNL employees who use compressed gases, hydraulic systems, cryogenic compounds, vacuum systems or any other pressurized apparatus are required to take the following compressed gas and/or pressure safety courses: EHS 0103 Working Safely with Compressed Gas and EHS 0171 Pressure Safety Awareness for Researchers. In these courses, pressure safety concepts are defined, common safety concerns (cylinders, regulators, fittings, etc.) are discussed, hazards that might be encountered in installing and using pressurized systems are presented, and points of contact are identified.
Consultation, Design, and Construction: LBNL maintains several levels of consultative capability for researchers, from simple concept discussion and fitting selection through detailed design, construction and testing of new pressure vessel systems. This assistance is provided by EHS (design and policy coordination), Engineering Division (design, design review, and construction), and Facilities (regulator repair shop and installation service).
Work Authorization: Work authorization is completed for all activities at Berkeley Lab through the Work Planning and Control (WPC) system, in which the researcher describes his/her system, analyzes the potential hazards, and agrees to measures to mitigate the hazards. This is always done as a concurrent authorization with EHS and may involve additional third-party review, testing, and other safety assurances appropriate to the particular system. The focus is on making these authorizations meaningful: to use the opportunity of the authorization to think about the safety of the system and how the operator and bystanders will be protected.