Energy sources, including electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal or other sources in machines and equipment can be extremely hazardous to workers. During the servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment, the unexpected startup or release of stored energy can cause serious and even fatal injury to employees. According to OSHA failure to control hazardous energy accounts for nearly 10% of serious accidents in many industries.
An essential component of energy safety is the lockout/tagout (LOTO) process. Proper LOTO practices and procedures can help safeguard workers from the release of hazardous energy, but unfortunately many companies overlook the importance of lockout/tagout procedures.
OSHA’s Standard on the Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) details the steps required to prevent accidents associated with hazardous energy. Visit the Lockout/Tagout section of OSHA’s website to learn more or read OSHA’s Lockout/Tagout Fact Sheet for a summary of practices and procedures necessary to disable machinery or equipment to prevent the release of hazardous energy.