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Lockout / Tagout (LOTO) Program

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Lockout / Tagout (LOTO) Program

Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) is the disabling of equipment to control the release of potentially hazardous energy while maintenance or service activities are being performed.

Energy sources include, but are not limited to:

  • electrical
  • hydraulic
  • mechanical
  • compressed air
  • thermal
  • pressurized water
  • gravitational
  • hydraulic
  • compressed air
  • pressurized water

Required initially, before work is performed, whenever there is a change in process, procedure, or hazard and a refresher recommended every 1 – 3 years.

The Occupational Safety & Health Association (OSHA) standard for The Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout), Title 29 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 1910.147, addresses the practices and procedures necessary to disable machinery or equipment, thereby preventing the release of hazardous energy while employees perform servicing and maintenance activities. The standard outlines measures for controlling hazardous energies—electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal, and other energy sources.

The standards establish requirements that employers must follow when employees are exposed to hazardous energy while servicing and maintaining equipment and machinery. Some of the most critical requirements from these standards are outlined below:

  • Develop, implement, and enforce an energy control program.
  • Use lockout devices for equipment that can be locked out. Tagout devices may be used in lieu of lockout devices only if the tagout program provides employee protection equivalent to that provided through a lockout program.
  • Ensure that new or overhauled equipment is capable of being locked out.
  • Develop, implement, and enforce an effective tagout program if machines or equipment are not capable of being locked out.
  • Develop, document, implement, and enforce energy control procedures.
  • Use only lockout/tagout devices authorized for the particular equipment or machinery and ensure that they are durable, standardized, and substantial.
  • Ensure that lockout/tagout devices identify the individual users.
  • Establish a policy that permits only the employee who applied a lockout/tagout device to remove it.
  • Inspect energy control procedures at least annually.
  • Provide effective training as mandated for all employees covered by the standard.
  • Comply with the additional energy control provisions in OSHA standards when machines or equipment must be tested or repositioned, when outside contractors work at the site, in group lockout situations, and during shift or personnel changes.
Regulatory bodies
  • Cal/OSHA (California Occupational Safety & Health Association)
Who needs it

Occupational Safety & Health Association (OSHA) requires that all facilities that use equipment on which cleaning, repairing, servicing, setting-up and adjusting will be performed must have written hazardous energy control procedures for locking out and tagging out equipment. Lockout and tagout rules affect everyone — even those worker who don’t actually service equipment. OSHA requires lockout and tagout because failure to lockout machinery before working on it is a major cause of serious injury and death in California.

Regulation reference
  • Cal/OSHA Title 8, Section 3314.
  • Cal/OSHA Title 8, Section 3203.
  • Cal/OSHA Title 8, Section 5144.
  • Cal/OSHA Title 8, Section 1509.
What our service provides:

Our Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) program involves the maintenance activities of equipment where employees are involved in these activities. Equipment can include things like presses, high voltage equipment, etc.

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What is Lockout/Tagout (LOTO)?
Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) is a safety procedure that involves isolating energy sources from equipment to prevent accidental startup during maintenance or servicing.

Why is a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Program necessary?
A Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Program is crucial to protect employees from the potentially lethal release of energy during equipment maintenance, repair, or cleaning.

Who needs to have a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Program in California?
California-based companies with equipment or machinery that poses an energy hazard during servicing or maintenance are required to have a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Program in place.

What are the key elements of a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Program?
A comprehensive Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Program includes energy control procedures, employee training, machine-specific procedures, periodic inspections, and documentation.

How do I identify equipment requiring Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedures?
Identify equipment by conducting an energy hazard assessment to determine which machines pose energy-related risks during maintenance.

Who can perform Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedures?
Only authorized employees who are trained in Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedures should perform lockout/tagout.

What is the difference between lockout and tagout?
Lockout involves physically locking energy sources in the “off” position, while tagout uses tags and signs to warn against reenergizing equipment. Lockout is more effective and preferred.

When is Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) required during equipment maintenance?
Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) is required whenever employees are exposed to the unexpected release of energy during equipment maintenance, repair, or servicing.

What should be included in a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedure?
Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedures should include a clear sequence of steps for safely de-energizing and isolating equipment, as well as verifying that it’s safe to work on.

Can employees remove their own lockout/tagout devices?
Employees who apply lockout/tagout devices should also be the ones to remove them, unless specific provisions and procedures are in place for group lockout.

How often should Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedures be reviewed and updated?
Procedures should be reviewed and updated whenever equipment changes, new hazards are identified, or when there are changes in the workplace.

Is training required for employees involved in Lockout/Tagout (LOTO)?
Yes, training is mandatory. Employees must be trained on the Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedure, the importance of Lockout/Tagout (LOTO), and how to apply and remove lockout/tagout devices.

You can access to Lockout / Tagout (LOTO) Training section and figure out how you can get support from our EH&S specialists.

What types of energy sources need to be controlled with Lockout/Tagout (LOTO)?
All potential energy sources that could pose a hazard during servicing or maintenance, such as electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, and thermal energy, must be controlled.

Are contractors and outside personnel required to follow the company’s Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedures?
Yes, contractors and outside personnel should follow the host company’s Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) procedures when working on equipment within the facility.

How can I ensure compliance with California-specific Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) regulations?
Consult California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) regulations and seek guidance from safety professionals to ensure compliance.

Please Contact Us to get support or request a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Program. Our skilled team of EH&S specialists is ready to assist you.

Are there penalties for non-compliance with Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) regulations in California?
Non-compliance can result in citations and fines from California Occupational Safety & Health Association (Cal/OSHA), in addition to increased safety risks for employees.

Can Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) devices be tampered with or removed without authorization?
Tampering with or removing Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) devices without proper authorization is strictly prohibited and can result in disciplinary action.

What is a “group lockout/tagout” procedure?
Group lockout/tagout allows multiple authorized employees to apply their own locks and tags to a single energy isolation device while still ensuring the safety of all employees involved.

Can Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) devices be used in emergency situations?
Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) devices should never be used in emergency situations where rapid equipment shutdown is required. Emergency procedures should be separate and well-documented.

Where can I find additional resources and training for Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) compliance in California?
Resources and training materials are available from Cal/OSHA, industry associations, and safety consulting firms to help companies ensure Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) compliance and employee safety.

Please Contact Us to get support or request a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Program. Our skilled team of EH&S specialists is ready to assist you.