Work procedures are formed and adhered to, to keep people safe at work. However, many accidents occur during non-routine operations such as when equipment is being maintained, cleaned, fixed or unblocked.
To prevent accidents, equipment should be made safe before such work takes place, and correct procedures followed to reinstate the equipment. Lock out, tag out (LOTO) is one part of the effort for making equipment safe.
The LOTO Course explains a five-step process, from planning to trying out, before work is carried out. It also summarises the steps to be taken after work has finished but before restoring power. As well as more obvious electrical hazards, the course explains that there are other energy sources that might need to be protected against, including hydraulic pressure, gas and moving parts. It uses cases studies based on real accidents to engage the learner and to illustrate the importance of applying controls.
It is not the aim of this course to explain particular shutdown sequences or LOTO steps for specific equipment. Although the course details examples of how energy sources can be locked out, it’s the employer’s duty to carry out specific risk assessments, to have tailored procedures in place and to train employees to use specific equipment.