OSHA estimates that nearly 40 million maintenance workers could be exposed to unexpected machine start-ups or releases of stored energy while performing service work on equipment. Developing and implementing a comprehensive lockout/tagout program has proven to be a safe and effective way for reducing these types of incidents. Lockout/Tagout refers to the complete isolation of equipment during maintenance or service work. OSHA regulations 29 CFR 1910.147 and 1926.416 require the use of locks or tags as warning devices to ensure employees are not injured from accidental machine start-ups. Service and maintenance employees need to be trained in the recognition and use of locks and tags, their applications, and personnel requirements.
This program establishes the minimum requirements for disconnecting hazardous energy sources before servicing, maintenance, or repairs take place. Lockout is the required method of controlling personnel exposure to hazardous energy sources. Equipment hazardous energy sources are turned off, physically locked, and verified to be de-energized before employees begin maintenance or repair work that could otherwise pose a significant safety hazard.
Each authorized employee shall receive training in the recognition of hazardous energy sources, the type and magnitude of the energy available in the workplace, and the methods and means necessary for energy isolation and control.
Red Personal Danger Locks & Tags
An individually keyed RED lock shall be applied anytime the owner is exposed to a hazardous energy source. The key must be under the control of the employee when the lock is in use, and the lock shall not be left on equipment when the employee is not on site. All persons installing a red personal danger lock shall also install an accompanying tag that includes their name and how the individual can be contacted. The tag approved for use at Cornell is a white “Danger” tag with red stripes and black lettering.
Yellow Caution Locks & Tags
Yellow caution locks and tags are used to indicate equipment as being out of service. These machines and systems must not be turned on or used until an authorized employee has removed the lock and tag. Yellow locks and tags are never to be used alone for personal protection when working on equipment. All persons installing a caution lock shall also install an accompanying caution tag that includes their name, date(s), and how the authorized person can be contacted.