1. Perform a hazard assessment:
Before beginning any lockout/tagout procedure, it is essential to assess the potential risks and hazards associated with the machinery or equipment being worked on. This includes examining the machine specifications and its operation manual to identify areas of risk, such as pinch points, contact with electrical currents, and any other possible sources of danger.
2. De-energize the equipment:
Once the potential risks have been identified, the worker must then shut off and disconnect all power sources to the machine or equipment being worked on. This includes turning off electrical switches, unplugging cords, and removing any batteries from the system. All isolating devices must be in their ‘off’ position before beginning any further lockout/tagout procedures.
3. Lock out the equipment:
The next step is to place a physical lock and tag on each of the energy isolation points (e.g., circuit breakers) used to de-energize the machinery or equipment being worked on. These locks should only be removed by an authorized personnel and should be clearly marked with the name of the authorized individual.
4. Tag out the equipment:
Along with the lockout devices, each machine or piece of equipment must also have tags indicating that it is in a de-energized state and cannot be re-energized until all locks are removed. These tags should include a warning to workers not to attempt to manipulate any energy-isolating devices while work is being done on the system.
5. Verify de-energization:
Before proceeding with any work on an energized machine or system, it is important to verify that all energy sources have been successfully disconnected. This can be accomplished by conducting voltage tests if necessary, as well as visually inspecting the equipment for any remaining sources of electricity.
6. Release lockout/tagout devices:
Once the work is completed and the system is ready to be re-energized, it is important to remove all locks and tags before turning on any energy sources. This will ensure that no one can inadvertently start the machine or equipment while repairs are underway.
7. Disconnect energy sources:
Finally, all energy sources must be disconnected from the machinery or equipment being worked on before moving onto the next task or job site. This includes unplugging cords, removing batteries, and turning off circuit breakers or electrical switches as needed.
8. Clean up and inspect the work area:
After all energy sources have been disconnected, it is important to clean up the work area and inspect the equipment for any damages or other issues that may have occurred during the task. This final step of the lockout/tagout procedure helps ensure a safe working environment for future tasks and maintenance activities.