What Is the Difference Between Occupational Safety and Process Safety?

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Q: What is the difference between occupational safety and process safety?

Occupational safety involves the safety of the workplace, including personnel safety and individual worker safety concerns that may arise from such hazards as slips and falls. In contrast, process safety is concerned with extreme safety issues that arise from major hazards, such as an explosion or a fire.

Due to their nature, process safety incidents occur far less frequently than occupational safety incidents. Process safety monitoring will include regular inspection of chemical release, energy and contaminant levels. Process safety is a protection for the entire community. Occupational safety monitoring will concern itself with ensuring that walkways and stairwells are well maintained. Occupational safety is specifically concerned with protection of workers.

The costs associated with process safety are much higher than with occupational safety. However, the costs of ignoring process safety vigilance would be astronomical.

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