Lockout/tagout: Ensure compliance

by on March 15, 2011 · 0 Comment POSTED IN: Workplace Safety Network

You know that good safety goes beyond compliance – frontline workers need to think about and adapt safety procedures to their tasks. And you know that in many cases, workers often make good, safe decisions. But those decisions need to be within the realm of good safety sense.

Worse, they may think because they got away with something once – or even 10 times – they’ve created a more efficient system. That’s why it’s important to remind workers to yes, think, but keep that thinking within a framework of guidelines and rules set by your company and OSHA.

Five keys
For safe lockout/tagout, consider the following recommendations from OSHA:

  1. Ensure that all power to the equipment is isolated, locked or blocked, and/or dissipated at points of control using a method that cannot be removed or overridden. In electrically powered machinery, for example, shut off the main switch or disconnect the electrical lines.
  2. Use a safeguard to prevent the circuit from being re-energized during the maintenance or repairs.
  3. Inform all other employees that the circuit is deenergized and must remain so. This way, you’ll avoid having another employee try to restart the machine.
  4. Train employees in the procedures that apply to them. Workers shouldn’t have to guess what they’re allowed to do when it comes to LO/TO.
  5. Strictly prohibit employees from removing or bypassing another’s safeguard.

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