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The loto procedure that every safety officer should know

loto procedure image

The Loto procedure that every safety officer should know.

LOTO PROCEDURE means lock-out tag-out procedure. A procedure that ensures that all energy sources such as pneumatic, electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal, or other sources are closed to prevent any accidental release from them during maintenance or repair work. Mainly before the start of any maintenance or repair work on equipment. 

Loto procedure is a safety procedure that prevents workers from getting this hazardous energy from harming them when doing maintenance work or repair work in equipment or machines in a factory; an unexpected startup or release of stored energy can result in injury or death to workers. The release of hazardous energy unexpectedly can give rise to electrocution, burns, crushing, cutting, lacerating, amputating, or fracturing body parts, and others.

OSHA Standard.

OSHA has a directive on how and when to carry out the LOTO Procedure. 

The OSHA standard gave a directive called LOTO Standard for The Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) (29 CFR 1910.147) for general industry. It outlines measures for controlling different types of hazardous energy. The LOTO standard establishes the employer’s responsibility to protect workers from hazardous energy.

OSHA noted that employers have the responsibility to train, re-train and instruct all employees who work in an area that utilizes energy control procedure(s)

When you want to embark on any maintenance or repair work in any environment of work or home or others, you have to follow the LOTO procedure. It details the sequence of actions you must follow before the start of the work. But before then, all workers working in the maintenance should have their lock used to secure the disconnected device before starting. On the tag, the individual will input their name and the description of the work they are doing or are about to do.

LOTO Procedure that every safety officer should know.

STEP 1. Shut down the preparation.

When you want to engage in the shutdown, notify everyone in that area about the Lockout and tagout LOTO procedure. Inform the persons about the activity you are about to carry out.  

STEP 2. Carry out the shutdown.

Make sure that you disconnect all the machines connected to the service line. Always ensure that you do not leave anything to chance.

STEP 3. Disconnect the energy sources.

Disconnect all the energy sources of that machine with energy-isolating devices and ensure that it’s completely shut off from the equipment. 

What are energy-isolating devices?

Energy-isolating devices physically prevent the transmission of energy. They are not operating controls like the ON/OFF or STOP buttons. They include circuit breakers, a line valve etc. 

STEP 4. Apply the lockout tag out .

Apply the lockout tag out of the device on the machine immediately. The idea here is that each of the workers doing the work has to apply their own lock and tag device so that the machine when all the workers have to remove their lock and tags. 

What is a lockout?

A lockout device is a device that holds the energy-isolating device in an off position. It has a safety padlock that prevents removing the energy-isolating device and ensures that energy cannot flow from the source to the machine. Apply all assigned locks to each energy isolation device. 

What is a tagout?

Tag out involves using a tag out device in an energy-isolating device. It is securely fastened to the energy-isolating device and equipment to prevent operating the machine. It serves to warn other people not to restore energy until the completion of maintenance work. 

Where are you to use locks and tags?

  • Safety blocks
  • line valves
  • Circuit breakers
  • Pipeline blank flanges.

STEP 5. Render safe all hazardous stored or residual energy.

Ensure that all stored energy or residual energy is safe so that it does not exist to cause harm. While working, always verify and be sure that no re-accumulation of energy happens again. 

STEP 6. Verify again.

Verify and ascertain the effectiveness of the isolation and the de-energization. 

STEP 7. Bring back the machine on line.

Know that, at the end of the maintenance activity, remove the equipment from the lockout tag. Make sure the environment is still safe before you do so.

Assemble all the equipment parts and reinstall the necessary guards and safety devices, clear all the work tools from the area and verify all the checks to know they are in order. Then inform all the employees that the machine is ready for use. 

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