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Three Ways to Pandemic-Proof Your Facility

The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a spotlight on a challenge that has already been at the center of biotech facility design for years: viral containment. In order to keep both operators and end-user patients safe, biotech facility architects regularly employ the strategies of segregation, cleanability, and automation/process closure for the sake of safety. Due to the effects of COVID-19 pandemic, there is potential for safety solutions that are commonplace and pandemic-proof in biotech ATMP projects to transfer into unrelated commercial design projects.

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Safety: Learning to Think the Right Way

During the course of any day at a chemical process plant, workers have to make decisions that are often small and seemingly mundane, but in a rare occurrence an incident breaks out and the right response has to happen. And it has to happen now.

How can those involved make the right decision?

“We must invest in allowing our workers to make better decisions,” said Jennifer McDonald, EHS – process safety at W.R. Grace during a session at the 2020 Virtual AIChE Spring Meeting & 16th Global Conference on Process Safety entitled “I Just Didn’t Think” – Improving Situational Awareness. “We must invest in teaching employees to make safer decisions.”

McDonald, who gave one of three presentations on the topic, pointed out the National Safety Council (NSC) said a worker is injured on the job every seven seconds. The lack of hazard recognition and poor decision making are some reasons why that happens.

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