The servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment may pose some danger. Unforeseen release of stored energy could cause injury to employees. According to OSHA, hazardous energy can account for nearly 10 percent of serious accidents in many industries.
Proper lockout/tagout (LOTO) practices and procedures protect workers from the release of hazardous energy. Persons involved in working around energy systems such as electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, and others should receive Lockout/Tagout online OSHA training.
Employees must continue to be familiar with their responsibilities and procedures should be implemented properly. Inspection of each energy control procedure must be performed at least annually. This ensures effective protection to employees during servicing and maintenance operations.
OSHA says that an authorized employee other than the one(s) who is using the energy control procedures must determine the following:
- Whether the steps in the energy control procedure are being followed.
- Whether the employees involved know their responsibilities under the procedure.
- Whether the procedure provides the necessary protection, and what changes, if any, are needed.
The inspector must observe a representative performing the servicing and maintenance operation using the lockout/tagout procedure. A review with each authorized employee of responsibilities under the procedure being inspected must be completed. For tagout procedure, the review extends affected employees as well. They need to know the importance of avoiding accidents when the equipment is being serviced or maintained.
Inspections need not be one-on-one meetings. Explaining to a group that they need to follow the procedures may also be done.
The certification must include information on each of the following:
- The machine or equipment on which the energy control procedure was used.
- The date of the inspection.
- The employees included in the inspection.
- The name of the inspector who performed the inspection.