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On May 24, Scott Silva will present an eight-hour ASTI Safety Day at the Process Heating & Cooling Show.

≫ Learn more and register here.

When it comes to ammonia, “Survival sometimes means being ready to achieve the critical task,” says Gary Smith, the president and chief executive officer of the Ammonia Safety Training Institute, better known as ASTI.

In a wide-ranging interview, Gary speaks with editor Linda Becker about upcoming ammonia safety training as well as ammonia safety in general. Also, Scott Silva, the chief of operations and industrial emergency planning with ASTI, shares insights and discusses the upcoming safety day on May 24 at the Process Heating & Cooling Show.

Listen above or jump to specific questions:

  • ASTI's mission is to develop emergency response protocols and training for the safe response to ammonia emergencies. For those less familiar, what are — and why are —emergency response protocols and training for the safe response to ammonia emergencies necessary? [1:06]
  • Scott, as someone who has experienced a serious ammonia release up close and personal, can you give me what's the perspective being that end user being up there like? [8:18]
  • What year was this and how much training had you received? Were you aware of ASTI? [10:35]
  • You know, one of the things you're doing at our show is a safety day. That's taking your word to the people, so to speak. What is the history behind ASTI's Safety Days? When and how did they start? [15:02]
  • How many safety days have there been since the beginning? [17:28]
  • What should someone attending a safety day expect? What does the eight-hour program include? [18:46]
  • Generally speaking, who should plan to attend the safety day at the Process Heating & Cooling Show (or any safety day)? [25:55]
  • Does ASTI offer this kind of training throughout the year? Where? [28:41]
  • Is there anything you hoped I would ask about ASTI that I haven't, and you want our listeners to know about? [31:08]

Listen to the Podcast:

2 PHC 0423 ASTI Ammonia Safety Training
3 PHC 0423 ASTI Ammonia Safety Training

What is covered in Safety Day training?

The eight-hour ASTI Safety Day curriculum can include a range of topics that are tailored to each event:

  • Reviewing the hazard analysis quick guide for emergency responders.
  • Explaining the life safety plan, including setting proper initial isolation and protective action zones
  • Dealing with downwind receptors.
  • Describing health and emergency medical procedures, including proper decontamination and readiness for transport.
  • Reviewing valve and piping problems that lead to emergency events.
  • Dealing with high pressure system circumstances.
  • Mastering the emergency shutdown procedure.
  • Building readiness to engage the Hazmat Tech team.
  • Integrating with public safety responders.
  • Preparing for and effective use of crisis communications.
  • Understanding personal protective equipment (PPE) and monitoring options, including selection and proper use.
  • Discussing fixed monitoring systems, including selection, maintenance and use.
  • Discussing the four phases of emergency response for the 30-Minute Plan.
  • Put forward techniques for managing a simulated emergency event using the ASTI One Plan Checklists.

For those interested in attending the ASTI Ammonia Safety Day in Chicago, you can register at The registration fee includes classroom instruction, materials and handouts; continental breakfast, networking breaks, lunch, a full conference registration to the Process Heating & Cooling Show, which means you can attend other sessions and the exhibit floor before and after the safety day training, and a certificate of completion for ammonia safety day.

To learn more about the Process Heating & Cooling Show, or to register, visit To listen to other episodes in this podcast series, visit