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Principle 1—Define a Maintenance Philosophy

Through this step, we defined the purpose of maintenance and the manner in which it would be carried-out, and stated it as follows:

"The purpose of maintenance is to keep the technical integrity of assets secure, and to ensure that their operational reliability is at all times at the level which our refinery business needed. Maintenance activities should be carried out in a safe and environmentally responsible manner. This should be achieved with the maximum possible efficiency so that the overall cost, i.e., the sum of direct and consequential costs, is minimized."

It took some time and effort to make most people really understand the meaning of this definition; but once that happened, there was visible enthusiasm especially among the plant operators and maintenance workers. For the first time ever, refining economics reached people at the shop-floor level. Indeed these were the people who made things happen! Everyone could clearly see the direction in which the maintenance effort needed to be pushed.

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