By Katherine Bonfante, Managing Editor, Digital Media
It is only natural to be startled as soon as we hear alarms go off. Anyone can go into panic mode with loud warning sounds blaring in our surroundings, pop-up messages inundating our display monitors or, even worse, emergency lights flashing in our work areas. Come on, even an everyday sound like an alarm clock scares many of us.
Now, imagine managing industrial systems and suddenly distress alarms go off. At the same time, your computer screen continuously flashes the same error message: Warning, Error Alert.
Scary, isn't it? When it comes to industrial environments, the key to conquering alarms is to remain calm, follow safety procedures and solve problems quickly and effectively before other errors occur and more alarms go off.
This month, ControlDesign.com wants to point you to a few resources that can help you, if not prepare you, when and if the alarms go off.
Visit our White Paper Library (www.controldesign.com/whitepapers) to read and learn from the various industrial alarm white papers we have gathered for you.
"Alarm Management Blunders: Avoiding 12 Costly Mistakes" is a white paper from Matrikon that explores the importance of effective alarm systems and industrial safety.
This paper highlights mistakes process controls operators and engineers have made in the past while undertaking alarm management solutions. Log on to www.controldesign.com/12AlarmMistakes and learn how you can avoid these same mistakes.
Avoiding ineffective alarm systems is always a good idea. To learn about alarm systems you should avoid, read "The Top 10 Worst-Performing Alarm Systems in the Industry." This report, written by PAS, presents some of the worst, most overloaded alarm systems PAS has found, and it also offers possible solutions to these systems.
Read this report at www.controldesign.com/WorstAlarmSystems and discover how bad things can get when you rely on alarm systems that perform inadequately.
Overall, understanding alarm systems and managing them effectively can be tricky. If you want to learn more about alarms and how these have been simplified over the years, read Senior Technical Editor Dan Hebert's article "Alarms Simplified."
Hebert says alarm systems have progressed thanks to three technologies: programmable graphics terminals, Ethernet/Internet communications, and controllers with PC-like functionality.
Read the full article at www.controldesign.com/SimpleAlarms and come to understand how these technologies have made alarm system advancements easier.
Yes, industrial alarms are scary, but knowing how to manage them is how you can take charge and control your alarm fears.