Providing Backdrop Rentals and Theatrical Equipment and Supplies

Safety is no accident

Lockout/Tagout Control of Hazardous Energy Sources

Most injuries caused by the failure to control energy sources are:

      • Failure to stop equipment.
      • Failure to disconnect the power source.
      • Failure to dissipate residual energy.
      • Accidental restarting of equipment.
      • Failure to clear work before activation.

There are two types of energy.
> POTENTIAL ENERGY is stored energy. Examples are raised loads, compressed springs, etc.
> KINETIC ENERGY is the force in a moving mass. Examples are moving saw blades, flywheels, grinding wheels, etc.

Energy in the workplace comes from the following sources:

      • Electrical
      • Hydraulic.
      • Pneumatic.
      • Pressurized liquids and gasses.
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LOCKOUT is when a padlock is placed on a disconnect switch, circuit breaker, valve handle or other energy- isolating device that is in the off or closed position.

TAGOUT is when a warning tag is placed on the energy-isolating device that is in the closed position.

Using a lock is usually considered safer than using a tag. If your employer uses tags rather than locks the employer must be prepared to show that the tagout system provides the same level of safety that a lockout system would provide. Some organizations use both tags and locks.

When tags are the only form of protection, special additional training is required. This training is to inform you about the limitations of the tag and the importance of obeying the tag warnings.

Regardless of whether you use lockout or tagout or both, be sure you understand and follow the correct procedures for your organization.

Your employer will provide all locks, tags, keys, and other materials needed. The materials must be durable and unable to be removed easily. Locks and tags must be standardized for color, size, or shape. Tags must not deteriorate in wet or corrosive environments.

Locks and tags are to be used for controlling hazardous energy. Do not use these materials for locking personal items or anything else. Some method of identifying who attached the lock or tag must be on the tag or lock. You may be issued a lock for your personal use. Never lend it to a co-worker.

You MUST Lockout/Tagout when:

      • You are performing maintenance where the unexpected startup could cause an energy release.
      • The unexpected release of stored energy could cause injury.
      • Equipment with cords and plugs, except when the equipment is unplugged and the plug is under the control of the person performing the repairs.
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It is not necessary to Lockout/Tagout when performing normal operating procedures except when:

      • You remove a guard or bypass other safety device.
      • Place any part of your body in contact with the point of operation.
      • Place any part of your body into a danger zone associated with a machine operating cycle.
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The person who actually performs maintenance, or is in charge of the Lockout/Tagout is considered the "authorized" person or employee.

An "affected" person or employee is one who does not perform maintenance, but may operate the equipment or be in the work area. The authorized employee is responsible for informing affected employee of your Lockout/Tagout actions.

ONLY authorized employees may Lockout/Tagout.

Your employer is required to have a written Lockout/Tagout program and annually review that the program procedures are being followed.

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You are to receive initial training on the Lockout/Tagout program and should be retrained if:

      • There is reason to believe your knowledge of procedures is inadequate.
      • A change in your job assignment.
      • A change in machines, equipment or process where a new hazard is preset.
      • A change in the energy control procedures.
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The Procedure:

1) Prepare for Shutdown

      • What kind of energy powers the system you are about to shut down?
      • Is there more than one type of energy involved?
      • What are the hazards and how should they be controlled?

2) Shut Down the Equipment

3) Isolate the Equipment

      1. Throw main disconnects, close vales, throw circuit breaker.
      2. Disconnect or cap any auxiliary power sources such as secondary electrical, steam, hydraulic or pneumatic systems.

4) Apply Lockout/Tagout Devices

      • When more than one employee is working on the same equipment or system and must lockout the same energy isolating device, this is called a group lockout.
      • Each employee is to receive the same level of safety from a group lockout as they would receive from an individual lockout.
      • Each worker must attach his/her own lock to a hasp so each person will be sure of protection.
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5) Control Stored Energy

      1. Relieve, disconnect, or restrain any residual hazardous energy that could be present.
      2. Check that all moving parts have stopped.
      3. Relieve trapped pressure.
      4. Install ground wires to discharge electrical capacitors.
      5. Block or support elevated equipment.

6) Verify Isolation of Equipment

      1. Warn employees and make sure everyone is clear of the Lockout/Tagout area.
      2. Test to ensure the right system has been locked out and cannot be operated.
      3. Press all start or other operating controls. Return them to the "off" position. This procedure will prevent the equipment from starting by itself when energy is restored.
      4. Verify isolation periodically until work is complete.
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7) Completion of Service or Maintenance

      1. Inform all affected employees that locks and/or tags are to be removed.
      2. Conduct a head count to ensure that everyone is clear from the area.
      3. Remove Lockout/Tagout devices.
      4. Each worker MUST remove his or her own device.
      5. Tags should be signed and turned in.
      6. Follow correct checklist to restart machinery.
      7. Inform affected employees that locks and/or tags have been removed and the equipment is ready for use.
      8. If a Lockout/Tagout continues through a shift change, always wait for the employee who is replacing you to attach their lock BEFORE you remove yours. Do not leave your lock on when your shift is over.
      9. Never cut a lock off yourself. Always notify your supervisor that a lock is attached and the person who placed it is not there. Remember - IT IS ILLEGAL TO REMOVE SOMEONE ELSE'S LOCK.
      10. It is not possible to be too careful. Remember the energy which helps you do your job can bite you if you do not keep it under lock and key.
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