OSHA Safety Manuals | Remember to Lockout & Tagout
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lockout tagout

Remember to Lockout & Tagout

Remember to Lockout &Tagout

Anyone who operates, cleans, services, adjusts, and repairs machinery or equipment should be aware of the hazards associated with that machinery.  Any powered machinery or electrical equipment that can move in a way that would put people in danger is a hazard that can be prevented by following locking or tagging procedures.  Failure to lock out or tag power sources on equipment can result in electrocutions, amputations, and other serious-sometimes fatal-accidents.

What are the most common causes of these accidents?

  • The machine or piece of equipment was not completely shut off before a maintenance or repair operation. Not only must the machine be turned off but also the power source that goes to it.
  • The machine was turned on accidentally, either out of carelessness or because the person who turned it on didn’t realize that another worker was there and could get hurt.
  • The machine wasn’t working correctly but wasn’t fixed, turned off, locked or tagged, and someone who didn’t know about the problem used it.
  • Moving equipment wasn’t blocked.
  • Safety procedures were inadequate or hadn’t been properly explained.

Remember the dangers and be on your guard around any machinery and moving equipment.  Even if you don’t operate the machinery, you could get caught in it and injured if it isn’t properly disconnected.  So what can you do to prevent accidental injury from moving machinery?

  • Identify all jobs and equipment that require lockout of power sources
  • Post warning signs wherever possible to indicate that lockout is required
  • Develop written procedures explaining how lockout is to be done
  • Train all personnel in the lockout procedures for their particular job and offer periodic refresher training
  • Allow no deviation from the written policies and procedures
  • Use engineering and administrative controls as much as possible to eliminate the need for lockout
  • Perform regular maintenance to prevent malfunctioning equipment

Be aware of your personal safety and the safety of others when working with or around moving equipment and machinery.  Always follow proper lockout and tagout procedures, even for a quick or minor repair!

  • Proper lockout/tagout (LOTO) practices and procedures safeguard workers from the release of hazardous energy. The OSHA standard for The Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) (29 CFR 1910.147) for general industry, outlines specific action and procedures for addressing and controlling hazardous energy during servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment. Employers are also required to train each worker to ensure that they know, understand, and are able to follow the applicable provisions of the hazardous energy control procedures. Workers must be trained in the purpose and function of the energy control program and have the knowledge and skills required for the safe application, usage and removal of the energy control devices.
  • All employees who work in an area where energy control procedure(s) are utilized need to be instructed in the purpose and use of the energy control procedure(s), especially prohibition against attempting to restart or reenergize machines or other equipment that are locked or tagged out.
  • All employees who are authorized to lockout machines or equipment and perform the service and maintenance operations need to be trained in recognition of applicable hazardous energy sources in the workplace, the type and magnitude of energy found in the workplace, and the means and methods of isolating and/or controlling the energy.
  • Specific procedures and limitations relating to tagout systems where they are allowed.
  • Retraining of all employees to maintain proficiency or introduce new or changed control methods.