Safety and security risks have become an obstacle to the sustainability of the chemical industry in Bangladesh. A series of catastrophic events occurred in the chemical industry, chemical warehouse, transportation and distribution facilities in recent years, resulting in many deaths and substantial collateral losses. The key research questions are addressed in this work as (a) How to safe and secure the critical chemical facilities? and (b) What are the key steps required to implement an effective chemical safety management system? The study investigates chemical safety in order to identify the causes of the major accidents and accompanying casualties, formulating the safety management needs to develop a sustainable chemical industry in Bangladesh. The research particularly focuses on the identification of priorities, and formulation of national action plan recommendations for improving chemical management system and prevention of chemical accidents.  Based on research findings, the needs and recommendations are developed for the improvement of safety and security management so as to promote the sustainable development of the chemical and allied industries in Bangladesh.


Risk assessment with the application of inherent safety concept  is an accepted approach worldwide for improving sustainability of either the existing process or design of any new product/process. Performing risk assessment at initial stages is important to achieve safer, environment friendly and sustainable chemical process. Many chemicals are useful for particular purpose due to its inherent properties or hazardous natures.  Hazardous chemicals are found in industrial processes, commodity products, and consumer products. However, both humanity and the environment are exposed to harmful properties of these chemicals, which have been shown to be detrimental to human health and have adverse effects on ecosystems like loss of biodiversity. Chemical Substitution is an inherently safer approach to design products which finds alternative chemicals with same desired properties while avoiding its undesired environmental, health and safety related  properties. The research focuses on property based analysis of products and processes (safety, hazards and environment) and chemical substitution in products and processes design through altering chemicals or safer synthetic routes. The objective is to develop necessary tools  for quickly and reliably identify the promising candidates for chemical substitution through model-based techniques, check their economic feasibility, and only then proceed to conduct experiments to verify their compatibility and applicability. The experimental resources are used only for verification rather than for an inefficient, trial-and-error, and sometimes time-consuming and expensive search for substitute candidates.


The research focuses on the evaluation of safety performance of some hazardous facilities based on current safety practice by measuring their safety weighted hazard indices (SWeHI) of multifarious units of chemical process and what can be done to avoid any potential accidents in context of Bangladesh. The risks associated with hazardous facilities are always greater in a country like Bangladesh as the safety issues are not been prioritized by its key stakeholders. In recent years, there were number of deadly accidents occurred in the hazardous facilities which resulted multiple fatalities and property damage. The accident could avoid using proper safety protocols in those facilities. The major incident can be mentioned as Keraniganj plastic factory fire (2019), Chawkbazar building fire on February 2019, blast at Narayanganj chemical warehouse on March (2019), boiler explosion in Dhaka (2016), Tumpaco factory fire in Tongi (2016) and a lot more. There are many industries in Bangladesh which basically deals with flammable, explosive and toxic chemicals. In this works safety weighted hazard index of three facilities was assessed based survey data. Indices are considerably used for ranking units of chemical process industry. These indices are on the basis of explosions, unwanted fires and toxic release causing hazards, in addition to the safety precautions against it. This type of ranking provides industrial professionals to differentiate the more hazardous and less protected units from other well operated units in order to pay more concern to critical one. 


Fire safety is a major issue in Bangladesh considering recent times. Number of fire and explosion accidents from gas leakage has increased these days specially in residential and commercial buildings. The research focuses on fire spread behavior in an model compartment through a numerical analysis using a simulation software, Fire Dynamic Simulator (FDS). It works with spreading of fire containing heat release rate, rise of temperature, toxic gas dispersion and human evacuation. Simulated model and fuel loads can be created to predict the fire growth characteristics. Fire is generated using a burner function or using data of t-squared fire ramp method . Computational analysis results from those models were for optimization of the installation of suppression system or fire sprinkler system. The relationship with time for different fire scenarios help to predict the fire growth characteristics. As FDS uses fluid dynamics properties, the result can be useful and reliable with respect to real fire case study. 


Hazardous materials (HazMats) include explosives, flammable gases and liquids, oxidizing substances, toxic gases, radioactive materials etc. The hazards imposed by HazMats transportation cannot be evaded because such commodities will always need to be transported to different areas as required. Ensuring safety of HazMats transportation is of utmost importance as these materials are capable of causing serious harm to the environment and human health. Large amounts of HazMats are transported through the transportation networks by different ways such as by roads, railways, pipelines and waterways.  In a densely populated country like Bangladesh, the risks imposed by HazMats transport are even bigger due to a number of reasons such as lack of legal framework, absence of training of the vehicle crews, poor condition of roads and vehicles, deficiency in enforcement of rules and regulations and incompetence of local transport authorities. Existing acts, rules and relevant legislations regarding HazMats transportation are found to be quite inadequate compared to the international rules and recommended guidelines. A risk matrix based on Hazard probability and consequence needs to be developed. Risk analysis methods are required in this regards for road safety management system. 

Old Academic Building
Department of Chemical Engineering
Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technolgy (BUET) Dhaka-1000