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Jargon Overload

Today I attended a short introductory course on functional safety. The course mostly covered what we are expected to do to meet the the guidance for building and maintaining safety systems.

Personally, I think one of the main barriers to carrying out these tasks safely is the huge quantity of jargon involved. It is not necessarily that it leads to misunderstandings, I think the jargon is created in an attempt to avoid them. Rather than talking about a generic "control system", they need to be specific and talk about the BPCS (basic process control system) so you can be sure that people don't think you mean the shutdown/safety system. But by having so many acronyms, you can put the uninitiated off. If you don't work in the field every day, then it can be difficult to follow what is being talked about. You may not know what needs to be done. Or worse, someone who knows the plant may not be able to point out that really important error in the design because they didn't understand what the design was talking about.

I agree that the common language is important. I just also think that it should be easier for non process safety people to understand.

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