Hazardous Energy Control (Lockout and Other Means)
Training for the Control of Hazardous Energy
One could have an excellent written procedure, sophisticated tools and machinery and still not prevent injuries or fatalities from failure to use these. On the other hand, one study that analyzed OSHA accident investigation reports from 1984−1997 found that in more than half of the 348 investigated cases, lockout procedures were “not even attempted” [Bulzacchelli et al. 2008]. This demonstrates the importance of training on the use of lockout procedures and motivating employees to use them. Management needs to develop conduct training and audits and ensure that workers have not only the knowledge but skills and abilities to perform lockout duties. Training should involve workers that work close to the area where lockout procedures are to be implemented, and not restricted to the machine operators.
It is also important to realize that the failure to use lockout procedures may not be a training issue. Sometimes poorly maintained machinery and equipment may be more difficult to set up, more likely to require significant repetitive adjustments or be prone to frequent jamming. This might trigger attempts to take shortcuts and the decision not to follow prescribed procedures. Audits of program implementation should reveal these types of problems and give management the insights needed to address the underlying issues (see Auditing of Work Process).
OSHA has a Lockout-Tagout Interactive Training ProgramExternal that offers good information.
Additional OSHA resources:
- LOTO TutorialExternal
- Small Business Handbook (and Lockout/Tagout Procedures checklist included therein)External
- Safety and Health Topics: Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout)External
- OSHA Fact Sheet: Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout)Cdc-pdfExternal
- Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) OSHA 3120Cdc-pdfExternal
The links below are sample training resources which could be used after they are customized to your company needs.