01 August 2013

First process safety engineer announced in Malaysia

Sivabhalini Thevendiraraj

Sivabhalini Thevendiraraj, a chemical engineer based in Malaysia, is the country’s first person to be registered as a Professional Process Safety Engineer.

The register was announced last year by the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) to help improve safety across all engineering professions around the world. Since then, Professional Process Safety Engineer has attracted interest from engineers and major organisations based in 38 different countries in all five continents.

Sivabhalini Thevendiraraj, a Fellow of IChemE and principal safety and loss prevention engineer at SBM Malaysia Sdn Bhd, received her certificate from Chow Boon Ping, chairman of IChemE’s Malaysia Board on 11 July 2013 in Kuala Lumpur. The event was also attended by chemical engineers and managers from SBM Malaysia Sdn Bhd.

So far this year, there have been nearly 40 incidents in the process industries killing over a 100 people and injuring 450. It’s an issue of major concern to IChemE and its president, Judith Hackitt CBE, who is also chair of the Health and Safety Executive of Great Britain.

She said: “IChemE is taking a firm leadership position in regard to the competence of process safety professionals. For too long there has been a stark absence of professional recognition for those who competently apply process safety principles professionally.

“There is a lack of understanding by some, of the vital contributions process safety professionals make to safe design and operation of process plants, and certainly confusion regarding how their competency set differs from those who are rightly better described as practitioners in occupational safety.”

David Brown, chief executive of IChemE, said: “We congratulate Sivabhalini for becoming one of the first people in the world to be registered a Professional Process Safety Engineer, and also the team in Malaysia for helping to implement our new professional registration aimed at senior process safety practitioners.

“There continues to be saddening and unacceptable levels of death and injuries in the process industries across the world. The latest incident at the Blue Rhino propane plant in Tavares, Florida, this week is just another reminder of the dangers inherent in the process industries. Our new registration, as it rolls out across the world, will hopefully reduce some of the potentially avoidable accidents we have seen so far in 2013.”

My IChemE

IChemE is a registered charity in England & Wales (214379), and a charity registered in Scotland (SC 039661).