What Is a Process Hazard Analysis?

A Process Hazard Analysis (PHA) is a systematic method of identifying hazards involved with handling hazardous chemicals and developing a list of recommended actions to minimize associated risks.

Processes meeting the highly hazardous chemicals threshold requirements in the United States are required to perform PHAs per the Occupational Health and Safety Administration’s (OSHA) Process Safety Management (PSM) Standard and the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Risk Management Plan (RMP) Rule.

How Is a Process Hazard Analysis Conducted?

A PHA is conducted by a cross-functional team including engineering, operations, maintenance, and safety experts who are able to effectively identify hazards and recommend specific actions to minimize the consequences of failure.

Several methods can be used to perform a PHA, including “what-if” analyses, checklist methods, hazard and operability studies, failure modes and effects analyses, and fault-tree analyses. According to the OSHA standard, PHAs should be completed every five years.

What Is the Next Evolution of Reliability Analysis?

PHA’s are important tools for identifying hazards and risk mitigation plans, and per the PSM standard, they must be completed every five years. However, we know completing a PHA can be a time-consuming, resource intensive, laborious process.

With major advancements in data acquisition, warehousing, modeling, and analytics, we now have the opportunity to take the next leap in reliability analysis and improve upon the PHA process. We believe this leap is possible through Quantitative Reliability Optimization (QRO). QRO is a reliability modeling approach connecting relevant reliability data points at a complex facility into one integrated model, allowing for near real time complex decision making.

Regarding a PHA, QRO can:

  • Quickly gather and analyze data prior to meeting
  • Provide graphic presentation of data to reduce the time for required for analysis
  • Quantify likelihood and consequence of failure using near real-time asset data
  • Provide insights into facility-wide impacts of failures
  • Conduct a complete analysis that identifies changes that may have occurred after previous PHAs
  • Accommodate any PHA methodology
  • Reduce the time required to complete a PHA to improve utilization of your time and resources


With QRO, you can better leverage data and models to make PHAs more valuable. Learn more about Quantitative Reliability Optimization (QRO).

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