Models for Oxygen Deficiency Hazard Assessment in Occupational Safety

Presented by

Elena Stefana, Research Fellow at Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering of University of Brescia

About this talk

Oxygen Deficiency Hazard (ODH) occurs when the indoor oxygen (O2) content drops to a level that may expose workers to the asphyxiation risk. It can produce adverse health effects, which may be so severe to become Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health. It can occur in different types of working environments, including confined spaces, laboratories, manufacturing firms, and process industries. In such working environments, inert gases (e.g. nitrogen and argon) are often used and their releases may lead to the displacement and the consequent reduction of O2 in the air. Models represent a valuable tool for estimating the indoor O2 level in order to perform ODH assessments and identify adequate risk reduction controls for minimizing workers’ exposure. The conduction of uncertainty and sensitivity analyses allow safety managers to get a complete risk picture, be more informed concerning the degree of confidence in model results, identify and prioritize key sources of uncertainty, and improve risk management decisions. In this context, the webinar has the objective to use @RISK for carrying out uncertainty and sensitivity analyses, discussing the most interesting results in terms of indoor O2 levels, their likelihood of occurrence, and the inputs having more effect on the O2 level uncertainty. Attentions is also given to the description of implications for safety managers and decision-makers

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