The children in my neighborhood love to ride their bikes. Some wear helmets and some don't. A few weeks ago when the Midwestern weather started to break and the sunshine felt warm, the bike riders were out in full force. Two five-year-old cyclists could not get out of each other's way fast enough, and several members of the neighborhood witnessed the first bicycle collision of the season. Neither girl donned her helmet that day, and one was so dazed that her parents took her to the emergency room. Do you know the first question the ER doctor asked? You guessed it. "Was she wearing her helmet?" Embarrassed, her parents replied, no, she was not.

Have you ever skipped a safety step at your refrigeration plant, even though you knew it might cost you later? When working with industrial refrigeration and cooling processes, there are many dangers. The size of your facility and the types of manufacturing as well as the size and type of refrigeration charges you have will determine the safety rules you need to follow. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) spells out its process safety management rules in 29 CFR 1910.119 and in its General Duty Clause. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) offers its risk management program (RMP) at 40 CFR Part 68. The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) released safety standard IEC 61508 to help ensure the highest safety for electrical, electronic and programmable electronic-based safety-related systems. And let's not forget about the slew of local regulations with which you must comply. There are many rules to follow, indeed.

Big parts of our mission at Process Cooling & Equipment are to know your information needs, hear your problems and solve them, and bring to you a superior editorial product. For these reasons, we are excited to introduce a new column in PCE this issue. Safe Haven will focus on PSM, RMP and other guidelines such as the International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration's (IIAR's) ammonia refrigeration management (ARM) program, which was among the many safety highlights at the association's annual conference and exhibition in Albuquerque during March. (Check out the Industry News section for the full story.)

This month, Safe Haven begins. Drop me a line to let me know what you think about the new column as well as what topics you would like to see covered.

The little girl I mentioned earlier had suffered a mild concussion, and I have not seen her ride her bike sans helmet since! Having learned from others' mistakes, I now enforce the must-wear-a-helmet rule for my two sons.

Sharon Spielman
Senior Editor