Professional Engineers and Errors in INFI 90 Systems
I recently had a discussion with another professional engineer that made me realize that I might be too rabid in my perspective on the errors DBDOC finds in INFI 90 systems. We know some are significant and could cost money or worse under certain circumstances. However, getting the attention of many DCS specialists with responsibility for systems with errors is really tough.
Does this hold for professional engineers? The point was made to me that, if your job is improving the control strategy, and you use DBDOC to understand the process, you still do not have a moral or professional obligation to tell the system owner about errors you run across.
What do you people think? Should a professional keep quiet about errors that he or she discovers because the job is not to tell the systerm owners about errors? Alternatively, is it a mark of profound disrespect for the DCS specialists to assume they do not want to know about errors that are there?
Does the above only apply to professional engineers? You are DCS experts - do you want to know about errors? Do you want the people that pay you to know about them, even if they did not ask?
As professional engineer my duty will be to keep public safety paramount. If I find errors that can cause plant shutdown or potential safety issue then I would disclose the errors.
But before telling about those errors directly to system owner I would make an attempt to reach system integrator/supplier/programmer and explain the situation.
Keeping everyone in loop is the way I would go forward.
As per the last comment: Safety is paramount and if the "error" in question is detrimental to Safety at site it must be brough forward.
However if the error is not well known nor the impact on production or system, then I think it would be best to try and find out what is means (to DCS and production), mitigation required and even the impact of the any chamges needed. Have this in some form that can be presented and then setup a meeting with all responsible (depends on the problem) and state your case.
This way you should have all the information others need to make informed decisions, especially if there is significant money involved.
Smaller problem, that can be resolved without any direct impact on production or operation could be resolved directly without informing all (but let someone know) and then document what has been done to reolve so others can learn from what you have done.