How Gauges Can Help Prevent Costly Loss of Containment

Submitted by WIKA Instrument Guru
Loss of containment is one of the costliest things that can go wrong at a plant. Accordingly, smart enterprises employ a variety of measures that ensure loss of containment just doesn’t happen – or when it does, the adverse circumstances are kept to a minimum.

Safety concerns aside, even a relatively minor loss of containment can have significant financial ramifications. The Federal government and numerous state regulatory bodies impose strict penalties on such incidents, and even a relatively minor event can result in a fine from the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), for example, totaling in the millions of dollars.

Beyond those consequences are the operational costs associated with stopping work, cleaning up the area, and retooling the systems that led to the loss of containment.

Fortunately, today’s industries have a much wider understanding of the role gauges play in monitoring pressure, temperature, and levels to keep industrial processing systems safe. Quality, accurate instruments and gauges lead to correct readings and proper decision making by plant management. Inferior, inaccurate instruments might save you a few bucks in the short term, but it may lead to misinformation and ill-advised decisions in the future.

In a recent fugitive emissions event, the EPA levied a fine of more than $5.5 million. The EPA also required that enterprise to set aside yet another $5.5 million toward the implementation of projects to reduce emissions. In today’s lean and competitive industrial settings, having to shell out sums that large is a blow for most businesses.

On average, plants, have approximately 300,000 valves, pumps, gauges, and other connection points. Any of them can become a source of fugitive emissions — faulty or malfunctioning gauges included.

Various gauge designs and enhancements help prevent this scenario. WIKA’s all-welded stainless steel (AWS) gauges eliminate process compatibility issues – with no joints, there’s no way for the media to get out.

Ultimately, with the right gauges in place, your operation will achieve much better levels of safety, dependability, and reliability. You’ll rest easier, too, knowing that you’ve greatly reduced the potential for fugitive emissions at your facility. Want to learn more?  Contact Valin for valuable assistance in selecting and managing the instrumentation mix in your plant.
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