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Professor recognised for life-saving work

09 October 2008

Professor Trevor Kletz OBE has received a Distinguished Service Award from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents in recognition of his work to save lives and reduce injuries in the chemical industry.
The prestigious award is reserved for those who have made an outstanding contribution to health and safety.

Prof Kletz, of Cheadle, who is Visiting Professor of Chemical Engineering at Loughborough University, is famed worldwide for his development of the technique of Hazard and Operability Studies. He has made a fundamental contribution to the assessment and control of risks associated with the design, operation and maintenance of chemical process plant.

After graduating with a first class degree in chemistry in 1944, he joined Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI), where he progressed through various production roles to become Assistant Works Manager at Billingham Oil Works. In 1968, he was appointed ICI’s first technical safety adviser, and in 1978, he became a Visiting Professor of Chemical Engineering at Loughborough, later becoming a full Professor. He is also an Adjunct Professor at Texas A&M University.

Since retiring from ICI in 1982, Prof Kletz has developed a second career as a consultant, writer, commentator and lecturer on all aspects of process safety. His 11 books and well over 100 papers have had an enormous impact on students and practitioners in the UK and around the world. He was appointed an OBE in 1997 for his services to process safety.

He was presented with his award during the annual RoSPA Occupational Health and Safety Awards ceremony at the Hilton Glasgow on Thursday, September 25.

Tom Mullarkey, RoSPA Chief Executive, said: “The late Sir John Harvey-Jones, a former Chairman of ICI, once commented that Professor Kletz had single-handedly taught the firm to look at safety in a different way and that his persistence, imagination and passion had saved countless colleagues from injury and death.
“Prof Kletz’s influence has extended globally, and RoSPA is delighted to honour his very significant achievements through the presentation of a Distinguished Service Award.”

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