This is our frequently asked questions page with information about Lockout-Tagout, our products and our services.
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1 Why Lockout-Tagout
1.1 What is Lockout-Tagout?
Lockout-Tagout (LOTO) refers to specific practices and procedures to protect employees from unexpected activations and start-ups by dangerous machines and equipment. The LOTO procedures also protect employees from the release of hazardous energy during service and maintenance activities (www.osha.gov).
1.2 What does LOTOTO stand for?
Lockout (LO): Turning off and isolating energy sources
Tagout (TO): Marking and identifying locked energy sources
Tryout (TO): Testing the locked and identified energy source for reconnection.
1.3 Why do we use Lockout-Tagout?
- Limiting the number of industrial accidents
- Control of insurance and compensation fees
- Better use of machines: reduced downtime and increased productivity
- Strengthening employee capacity
- Optimize the reputation
- Comply with legislation and regulations
1.4 During which maintenance activities is Lockout-Tagout used?
1.5 For which energy sources is LOTO used?
If energy sources are not cut off, the equipment may accidentally restart. A wide range of energy sources must be cut off, such as:
- Hydraulic pressure
- Compressed air
- All types of liquids
2 Legislation regarding Lockout-Tagout
2.1 Is Lockout-Tagout mandatory?
The use of Lockout-Tagout as a procedure is not a legal obligation in Europe (unlike in the US). Lockout-Tagout, however, is a proven and widely used way of complying with laws and regulations.
2.2 Machinery Directive and Lockout-Tagout
The machinery directive also says something about the isolation (lockout), identification (tagout) and testing (tryout) of energy sources.
Appendix 1, Article 1.6.3 Shutting down the power sources
The machinery must be equipped with devices to isolate it from any of its power sources. These establishments must be clearly identifiable. They need to be able to be locked if reconnection could endanger persons. It must also be possible to lock these devices if the operator cannot check from all places, that he can reach, that the power source is still disconnected.
For machines that can be supplied with electrical energy via a plug connection, it is sufficient to pull out the plug, given that the operator can check from all places that he can reach that the plug is still unplugged.
After the power source has been cut off, it must be possible to dissipate the energy remaining or stored in the electrical circuits of the machinery without endangering persons.
2.3 What's in OSHA 1910.147 LOTO Appendix A?
This American standard says something about the use of Lockout-Tagout during service and maintenance of machines and equipment. The standard sets 4 crucial features for the use of LOTO resources
- The equipment must be identifiable.
- The equipment may only be used for controlling energy.
- The equipment may not be used for other purposes.
- The equipment must meet the following requirements; sustainable, standard, identifiable and substantial.
3 LOTO procedure
3.1 What are the different components of a LOTO procedure?
A LOTO procedure consists of:
- Corporate procedure
- Establishment procedure
- Machine-specific procedures or Task-driven procedures
- Link with the work permit system
Based on industry-leading practice, this can be deviated from to a certain extent
3.2 The 7 steps to safely isolate a machine
When carrying out Lockout-Tagout activities, the following 7 steps need to be followed:
1. Notify the employees involved in the lockout tagout activities.
2. Go through the procedure before starting the LOTO procedure
3. Switch off the machine as usual.
4. Isolate all energy sources to the machine.
5. Lock these energy sources in with a LOTO tool, a safety padlock and a tag.
6. Take stored and residual energy (venting, cooling, securing, block & bleed) into account.
7. Double-check if the machine really is insulated before starting the work.
3.3 What residual energy do I have to take into account during Lockout-Tagout activities?
Residual energy should always be taken into account when drawing up a LOTO procedure.
Residual energy can be stored in any energy source, for example electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal, gas, water, electricity, steam or gravity.
Energy can be stored in, for example:
- Mechanical parts that keep moving due to inertia.
- Mechanical parts that can move under gravity
- Capacitors, accumulators
- Liquids under pressure
3.4 What is on a machine-specific LOTO procedure sheet?
A procedure sheet contains at least the following points:
- Identification number
- Descriptions of the work equipment
- Required LOTO materials
- Approval and audit (data and responsible person)
- Positions of the isolation points
- Descriptions of the insulation points equipped with:
A. ID number
B. Type of energy sources
C. Tools (lockouts)
F. Control of residual energy
3.5 What is a group lockout procedure
Group lockout is a method of lockout tagout that can significantly reduce the number of padlocks during larger Lockout Tagout operations.
With a group lockout, the person responsible for the group lockout locks all energy sources with 1 set of keyed-alike safety padlocks. The key to this set then goes into the group lockbox.
The group lockout manager then locks the lockbox with his personal safety padlock (preferably green), after which all those involved also place their personal padlock on the lockbox. When the work has been completed, each employee involved removes his personal lock, after which the group lockout manager can open the box with his personal padlock, get the key and unlock all the energy sources.
3.6 The impact of Lockout-Tagout on other processes
The LOTO procedure must be linked to other internal processes, to ensure that the lockout-tagout procedure is up-to-date and correct.
- Keep P&ID and electrical diagrams up to date.
- Make sure pipe markings are in place.
- Ensure all energy sources to be locked out are identified and marked.
- Make sure that adjustments to machines, new construction and/or alteration and assembly are implemented in the machine-specific procedure sheets (Management of Change).
- Provide a locked open register, for example, a sprinkler installation.
3.7 Can I only use Tagout if an energy source cannot be locked?
If only tagouts (e.g. safety tags) are used, employees should be trained in the following tag limitations:
- Tagout devices are necessary warning labels that are attached to the energy isolating devices, but they do not effectuate a physical locking as a lockout device can do
- If a tagout is attached to an energy isolation device, it may only be removed by the authorized employee responsible for it. This tagout device should never be bypassed, neglected, or by any other way ignored.
- Tagout devices should, in order to be effective, be clear and understandable to all authorized employees, affected employees and all other employees whose work (possibly) lies in the relevant area.
- The use of tagout devices could potentially lead to a false sense of security. Therefore this should always be seen as part of the total energy control program.
4 Implementation of Lockout-Tagout
4.1 The 6 steps for implementing Lockout-Tagout
Where to start? In our opinion, the best approach is to define 6 essential elements of Lockout/Tagout safety and use them as a basis for continuous improvement.
A typical lockout programme includes the creation, maintenance and updating of machine-specific procedures, energy control points, equipment lists and hierarchies, training and planning. For optimal management, we split these tasks into 6 main elements.
1. Establish a Lockout-Tagout policy
2. Write machine-specific procedures
3. Identify energy isolation points
5. Provide the right Lockout/Tagout tools
4.2 (1) How to set up a Lockout-Tagout policy?
The first step towards a successful Lockout/Tagout is the development of a documented policy for the energy control of machines.
The written lockout document will be the framework for your lockout programme and will define and clarify that programme. It is important to take into account international standards, relevant legislation and sector regulations*, as well as company-specific requirements so that your employees understand the programme and can put it into practice.
A Lockout-Tagout programme is not a one-off solution but should be reviewed annually to remain relevant and effectively protect employees. A Lockout-Tagout programme should be established by all relevant levels of the company.
4.3 (2) How do I write machine-specific procedures?
It is important that lockout procedures are formally documented and clearly identify the machines they refer to. They should outline the specific steps for shutting down, isolating, blocking and locking out machines to control hazardous energy. They should also include steps for the installation, inspection, removal and relocation of the Lockout-Tagout tools.
In addition to regulatory compliance, we recommend creating best practice procedures that include machine-specific photographs that clearly show the location of all energy control points. The procedures
are best communicated where they are relevant so that employees always have clear and visual instructions. Make sure your procedures are tailored to your employees for optimal understanding. For example, choose multilingual procedures if your employees speak different languages.
4.4 (3) Identify energy isolation points
Locate and identify all energy control points such as levers, switches, circuit breakers and plugs with permanent, standardised labels or tags. These points must be clearly identified. Also note that the labels and tags must be consistent with the machine-specific procedures.
4.5 (4) Lockout-Tagout training
Train your employees adequately, communicate processes clearly and carry out regular inspections to ensure your programme is working efficiently. During training, make clear why you are organising Lockout-Tagout, what it is exactly, what your Lockout-Tagout policy is and what your machine-specific procedures are. The training should be more intensive for employees who perform Lockout-Tagout, but we recommend communicating about Lockout-Tagout to all employees at a minimum. OSHA (USA) identifies three categories of employees:
AUTHORISED | Employees who lockout machinery and equipment for maintenance work.
CONNECTED | Employees who do not lockout machines or equipment themselves, but who use the machines on which maintenance work is being carried out.
The following table shows the number of hours worked in a given year, the number of hours worked in a given year, the number of hours worked in a given year, and the number of hours worked in a given year.
4.6 (5) Choose the right Lockout tools
An important part of a robust Lockout programme is providing your employees with the right tools for their safety. There are many products on the market.
Choosing the best solution for your machines is key to the effectiveness of your Lockout-Tagout programme. It is important to document and use the tools that are best suited for each energy control point or lockout point.
4.7 (6) How do I ensure that my procedure is sustainable and lasting?
Finally, we recommend that you continuously improve your Lockout-Tagout programme.
By continuously evaluating the programme, you create a safety culture that proactively addresses the challenge of safe interventions on machines. This allows your company to focus on maintaining a top-class Lockout-Tagout programme, rather than starting from scratch every year and only reacting when something goes wrong.
Make sure that Lockout-Tagout is permanently communicated on the work floor, for example with posters or banners.
5 Key systems and safety padlocks
5.1 Which key systems are there?
Different locking systems
Each lock has a unique key code.
Every lock in this series has the same key code.
Master key system
Every lock in this series can be opened with a master key. Master key systems are available for both equal-closing and differently-closing locks.
5.2 When do I use an equally coded padlock?
Identically coded or keyed-alike padlocks are used when one employee requires more than one personal padlock, e.g. a technical services employee who is carrying out several power sources or several LOTO procedures at the same time.
In addition, similarly coded padlocks are used in group lockout tagout. In this case, the group lockout responsible uses a set of same-key padlocks.
5.3 Can I order a master key for my safety padlocks?
A master key can only be supplied for padlocks that have been prepared for the use of this master key. It should therefore be determined in advance whether or not a master key system is required.
5.4 Can I re-order additional safety padlocks with the same key code?
Yes, give us the key code of the existing lock and we can deliver it to you. Due to the fact that this lock is custom-made, you should take into account a longer delivery time (3 to 4 weeks).
5.5 Why do master keyed systems have a longer delivery time?
Master key systems are always produced customer-specifically to ensure that you receive a unique master key code. The master key code and the key codes of the underlying locks are stored for you free of charge in order to expand the set in the future and to avoid duplicate issuing of key codes.
5.6 Why do (some) keyed-alike padlocks have a longer delivery time?
We have a number of keyed-alike padlock sets in stock, if the number of sets or the number of padlocks per set exceeds our standard stock, these padlocks will be produced (under the same conditions) customer-specific. The key codes of these sets are stored for you free of charge in order to be able to expand the set in the future and to prevent duplicate issuing of key codes.
6.1 Ordering by phone
Order by phone with the support of one of our sales engineers on +31 (0 ) 10 822 44 00. We are available from Monday to Friday between 08.30 and 17.00 (GMT+1).
6.2 Ordering by fax
Fax your order to +31 ( 0) 10 822 45 00
6.3 Ordering by e-mail
E-mail you order to: [email protected]
6.4 Ordering an online quotation
You can choose to create a quotation online and send a signed including your purchase order number or reference to our e-mail or fax.
* If you choose to order by fax or e-mail make sure your message includes the following information: Company name, shipping address, billing address, your VAT number, your reference number or purchase nr, our product codes and desired quantities.
6.5 Ordering on our webshop
After selecting the desired items and quantities add these to the shopping cart and click the button "Proceed to chekout". When the shipping, billing and payment fields are filled out, you will receive a confirmation email of your order. Within 24 hours we will inform you about the expected delivery date. After despatch from our warehouse you will receive an invoice by e-mail.
For shipment of your order Lockout-tagout-shop.co.uk uses the following partner: United Parcel Service (UPS) http://www.ups.com
7.2 Shipping costs
The shipping costs depend on the delivery address (country). Lockout-tagout-shop.com uses the following shipping zones:
Zone 1 = € 7,95
Zone 2 = € 14,95
Belgium, Denmark (excl. Faroe Islands and Greenland), Germany, France (incl. Corsica and Monaco), Great Britain (excl. Gibraltar and Channel Islands), Italy (excl. San Marino and Vatican City), Luxembourg, Austria, Spain (including . Balearic Islands, excl. Canary Islands) and Sweden.
Zone 3 = € 24,95
Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal (incl. Azores and Madeira), Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.
Zone 4 = € 29,95
Albania, Andorra, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Canary Islands, Cyprus, Faroe Islands, Gibraltar, Greece, Greenland, Iceland, Channel Islands, Croatia, Liechtenstein, Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Montenegro, Norway, Ukraine, San Marino, Serbia, Turkey, Vatican City, Belarus and Switzerland.
Zone 5 = € 99,95
Rest of the world (applicable for orders with a gross weight < 20 Kg)*
* Shipment costs for order with a gross weigth > 20 Kg are on request.
All prices are excluding VAT.
7.3 International Deliveries
For deliveries within the EU import duties do not apply. For deliveries outside the EU import duties and taxes can be applicable. For more information contact your local customs.
7.4 Track & trace
After shipping of your order, you will receive a UPS track & trace number by e-mail. Send an e-mail to [email protected] if you have any quenstions regarding your shipment.
7.5 Delivery Time
Stock items will be shipped within 24 hours (on working days) after placing your order. For non-stock items, the delivery time is about 7 days *. The shipping time depends on the shipping address. Below an overview of the expected delivery time per country:
1-2 working days:
Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
2-3 working days:
Corsica, Denmark, Faroe Islands, France, Greenland, Great Britain, Monaco and Switzerland.
3-4 working days:
Andorra, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Sweden.
Finland, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovakia, Spain (excl. Canary Islands) and the Czech Republic.
Estonia, Gibraltar, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Madeira, Portugal and Slovenia.
Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Channel Islands, Malta, Romania, San Marino and Vatican City.
8-12 working days:
Bosnia-Herzegovina, Canary Islands, Croatia, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Ukraine, Serbia, Turkey, Belarus and the rest of the world.
* With the exception of Master Keyed products or engraved padlocks.
7.6 Order confirmation
Lockout-tagout-shop.com always confirms the expected delivery date on it's order confirmation, which you will receive within 24 hours of placing your order.
8.1 Product warranty
One year of full product warranty applies on all products available through web shop.
More information about our return policy can be found here.
Lockout-tagout-shop.com is under no circumstances liable for damage caused by a defect in our items.
All prices on our webshop are excluding VAT. VAT ( 21%) only applies to business orders with a shipping address within the Netherlands or non-business orders with a delivery address within the EU. For business orders within the EU and all orders outside the EU, VAT will not be added. Please fill out your VAT-nr. in the checkout section if applicable.