Accession Number : ADP004892

Title :   Methods of Quantitative Risk Assessment: The Case of the Propellant Supply System,


Personal Author(s) : Merz,H. A. ; Bienz,A.

Report Date : AUG 1984

Pagination or Media Count : 21

Abstract : As a consequence of the disastrous accident in Lapua (Finland) in 1976, where an explosion in a cartridge loading facility killed 40 and injured more than 70 persons, efforts were undertaken to examine and improve the safety of such installations. An ammunition factory in Switzerland considered the replacement of the manual supply of propellant hoppers by a new pneumatic supply system. This would reduce the maximum quantity of propellant in the hoppers to a level, where an accidental ignition would no longer lead to a detonation, and this would drastically limit the effects on persons. A quantitative risk assessment of the present and the planned supply system demonstrated that, in this particular case, the pneumatic supply system would not reduce the risk enough to justify the related costs. In addition, it could be shown that the safety of the existing system can be improved more effectively by other safety measures at considerably lower costs. Based on this practical example, the paper demonstrates the advantages of a strictly quantitative risk assessment for the safety planning in explosives factories. The methodological background of a risk assessment and the steps involved in the analysis are summarized. In addition, problems of quantification are discussed. (Author)


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE