Control of hazardous energy, also known as “Lock Out Tag Out” (LOTO) or “Energy Isolation,” is a safety procedure that is used to prevent accidents and injuries caused by the unintended release of energy from machinery or equipment. This procedure involves isolating the energy sources that power the machinery or equipment, and then locking and tagging those sources to prevent them from being accidentally energized.
Why is Control of Hazardous Energy Important?
Control of hazardous energy is important because the release of energy from machinery or equipment can cause serious accidents and injuries. For example, the release of electrical energy can cause electrocution, while the release of mechanical energy can cause crushing injuries. By controlling hazardous energy, employers can help to protect their employees from these types of hazards.
How is Control of Hazardous Energy Implemented?
Control of hazardous energy is typically implemented through the use of lock out tag out (LOTO) procedures. These procedures involve the identification and isolation of energy sources, the locking and tagging of those sources to prevent accidental energization, and the restoration of the energy sources to their normal operating condition when the work is complete.
In order to effectively implement control of hazardous energy, employers generally:
✅ Identify all energy sources that power the machinery or equipment.
✅ Establish procedures that outline the steps for isolating, locking, and tagging the energy sources.
✅ Train employees on the proper use of these procedures.
✅ Provide employees with the necessary locks, tags, and other equipment to implement the procedure if necessary.
✅ Regularly review and update procedures to ensure that they are effective and meet the needs of the workplace.
Other ways to control Hazardous Energy
Engineering controls can be put in place to control hazardous energy. The use of trapped key to control all forms of hazardous energy can be implemented, including the trapped key being used to control access when hazardous energy has been isolated. This can be used in LOTO procedures as well in the event of using it for access control it can be used separately to LOTO procedures without the use of padlocks and in a more traditional interlocking setting.
Control of hazardous energy is a critical safety procedure that is essential for protecting employees from the unintended release of energy from machinery and equipment. By implementing the control of hazardous energy procedures, employers can help to ensure that their employees are safe while working with machinery or equipment.
Talk to an Expert
If you have questions about the control of hazardous energy or need help with machinery safety, consider reaching out to Fortress Safety.