The way we look at security changed forever in the aftermath of 9/11. We had to take a hard look at everyday things that we took for granted like waiting at the gate for a friend or family member to get off an airplane or simply packing a pocket knife in a carryon bag. More importantly, we had to take a hard look at the bigger picture. Just how safe was our country’s infrastructure? How vulnerable were our bridges, ports, roadways and water and food supplies -- the things that are vital to our economy and way of life.
It is no surprise that the chemical processing industry also came under scrutiny. Businesses processing, manufacturing and storing chemicals have always had to be extra concerned with safety and security issues. But, just like many other industries, 9/11 put a spotlight on security and the need for strong precautions and heightened measures.
Out of this increased awareness and concern came the Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA) and the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS). Both of these mandates were meant to provide security guidelines for facilities manufacturing, storing and processing chemicals that are consider at risk.
These mandates can be complex, so in this new blog, I want to look at plant and facility security by providing up-to-date information on standards, solutions, technologies and legislation. Since this is a blog, I don’t want it to be one voice, but a conversation with input from other experts and from the people out there working to secure our Nation’s critical infrastructure. I hope that you will share feedback with me and the readers of this blog. Always remember to comply with CVI (Chemical-terrorism, Vulnerability Information) and do not provide any information that is not considered public knowledge.
I have been involved in the security integration business for 15 years and the majority of my family has held positions in security for large chemical manufacturers. The plant environment was a part of growing up for me and it makes me feel good to know that I can play a part in protecting these facilities to help make them more secure. We all have an important role and winding through the process to a successful implementation isn’t easy. There are a lot of us out there all trying to accomplish a common goal and I hope this blog helps us achieve that goal together.
Ryan Loughin is Director of Petrochemical & Energy Solutions for the Advanced Integration division of ADT– www.adtbusiness.com/petrochem. He provides security education to CFATS and MTSA-affected companies and is a member of the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association (NPRA), Society of Chemical Manufacturers and Associates (SOCMA), Energy Security Council (ESC) and American Society for Industrial Security (ASIS). Loughin has also completed multiple levels of CVI Authorized User training (Chemical- Terrorism Vulnerability Information) which was authored by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
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