Each year, thousands of workers get injured or killed as a result of exposure to hazardous energy. It is usually the case in the course of maintenance on equipment due to lockout tagout (LOTO) methods were not put in place or correctly followed.
Each of these components (energy control processes, employee training, and regular inspections) is part of a comprehensive LOTO program. Without even one of these components in place, you’re violating all of the LOTO standards and placing employees at risk. The purpose of the LOTO plan is to develop plans and instruct personnel on ways to avoid an explosion of energy that could be dangerous when repairing equipment.
Definition of Lockout Tagout
Lockout refers to the physical application of the lock or other locking devices to the energy-isolating devices in equipment and machines that block the working on the equipment or machine. Energy-isolating devices block releases of energy. Electrical circuit breakers that are operated manually and disconnect switches are two examples of devices that isolate energy.
Lockout tagout procedures are in place to shield employees working on maintenance equipment against exposure to harmful energy. Different companies write in different ways. Some utilize online tools to create checklists, while others create the guidelines from scratch. You can, however, make use of lock out tag out examples online to give you an idea of creating one.
Authorized vs. Affected Employees
OSHA defines an authorized employee (AE) to be the one who is responsible for locking or tagging out equipment and machines or physically uses the lockout device or tag on an energy-isolating device.
OSHA defines the term Affected Employee (AFE) in two methods:
• A person whose job requires the use or operation of equipment or machinery lockout or tagout.
• A person whose job is to work in an area where the maintenance or repair on locked-out and tags out equipment is done.
If authorized employees ask, employees, who have been affected assist employees in lockout tagout procedures by identifying the source of energy and turning off the equipment.
Primary and Secondary Energy Sources
Hazardous energy can be broken down into two types:
• Primary energy sources – include electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, chemical, and pneumatic energy.
• Second Sources — Being considered to be stored energy, such as the tension of a spring, the charged capacitor, or steam.
The equipment could have one source of energy or several different sources. The ability to recognize all energy sources can be the difference between fatal injury or death while taking care of or maintaining equipment in tagout or lockout.
AFEs must receive training in recognizing primary and secondary energy sources and isolation and control techniques to work in their respective areas. AFEs must distinguish between the primary energy source and other sources that are present in machines and equipment.
Tools That Can Make Lockout Tagout Easier
Most managers employ outdated methods for managing their lockout tagout programs. It is possible to get an extra fancy and use something similar to SharePoint and DropBox to eliminate the binder.
They indeed work; however, unless you intend on bringing a dinosaur home, you ought to think about the use of software specifically designed to make them simple and comply with OSHA guidelines.
The Lockout tagout software is specifically designed to make your procedure easy to design and manage, and access. You don’t have to be concerned about losing documents or sharing folders with the organization! Additionally, having images integrated into the procedure reduces the possibility that something could be lost.
Lockout Tagout Kit
Lockout tagout kits consist of lockout tags that can be used to perform various lockout tagout methods. They usually include tags, padlocks, and other tools that assist in identifying the possibility of energy release.
The advantage of the kits lies in that certain businesses can handle all their lockouts in one box.
Is lockout Tagout Software ideal?
To be honest, this is a decision you must make for yourself, but here are some things to think about.
If you appreciate sending employees home with all of the pieces they arrived with, avoiding OSHA fines, making your job easier, or saving time and money, lockout tagout software is probably just what you need.
The Importance of the Lockout Tagout
Incidents reports show that an alarming number of accidents involving maintenance could be avoided by using a simple lockout tagout procedure.
The creation of a safety culture within the operations of a plant must be considered to prevent employees from injuries. Although it may seem obvious, these procedures can be a big help if implemented consistently. Monitoring the practice of lockout tagout is a tangible method of making your workplace more secure.
Necessity is the basis of the invention. In most applications in business, efficiency is the determining factor for the outcome, success or failure, and the ability to adapt operational procedures is the result.
To ensure the quality of a lockout tagout program’s security effectiveness, it is imperative to modify and improve operational procedures to the fullest extent to reflect changes in the isolation of the primary energy source and other secondary sources.