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What is Lockout Tagout?

Lockout Tagout (LOTO) is a safety method enforced by putting the appropriate lockout or tagout devices to energy-isolating devices, in accordance with an established procedure, ensuring that the energy-isolating device and the equipment being controlled cannot be operated until the lockout device is removed.

Why use Lockout Tagout?

Lockout/Tagout standards and equipment are used to protect employees from hazardous energy sources on machines and equipment during service and maintenance. With ever increasing safety legislation, assuring the safety of workers working on electrical machines and valves is extremely important. A huge number of today’s industrial accidents are caused by the uncontrolled release of energy or by the unexpected start up of machines or equipment.

The main Lockout / Tagout injuries also known as the ‘fatal five’ are:

Not stopping the Equipment Not disconnecting from the power source Not dissipating residual energy Restarting of equipment accidentally Not clearing work area before restarting

Energy Control Program

Every workplace requires having an effective energy control program in place, this program should be specific to the types of machines and equipment being maintained. Many Hazardous energy source accidents can be avoided by making sure that proper Lockout/Tagout procedures along with the use of high quality lockout tagout equipment is used. To perform service or maintenance work on industrial equipment safely, it is imperative that the workers undertaking the task fully understand the importance of energy control and know how to apply energy isolation and Lockout Tagout correctly.

An effective energy control program will contain the following:

High Quality, durable and reliable lockout devices that will cover all mechanical and electrical applications A tailored Lockout/Tagout solution that will aid in developing and implementing your Lockout/Tagout program in an efficient manner Appropriate, documented and tailored Lockout/Tagout procedures which are all OSHA compliant Employees should be trained in both the classroom and “on the floor” environments to ensure that they gain a full understanding of the Control of Hazardous Energy Lock out Tag out Audits should be run regularly. Equipment Identification and Cataloguing, Energy Control Tags and Lockout Tagout Signage should also be implemented.