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Course 710 - Energy Control Program (Lockout/Tagout)

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Training and Communication

Hands-on training to increase knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) is required for LOTO.

Employee Training and Communication

The employer is required to provide effective training for all employees covered by the lockout/tagout standard and ensure that all employees understand the basic program concepts, including the purpose, function, and restrictions of the energy control program, and how to control those hazards.

Authorized employees must possess the knowledge and skills necessary for the safe application, use, and removal of energy controls. This training also must make employees aware that disregarding or violating the energy control program could endanger their own lives or the lives of co-workers.

Why Training is Important

It is important to train employees so they understand the purpose and function of the energy control program and get the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) necessary to safely apply, use and remove the energy controls. The LOTO standard requires different levels of training for the three categories of workers: authorized, affected, and other employees.

Man Survives Going Through Wood Chipper

An employee at a wood chip company in Washington State, USA went through a wood chipper and survives. According to a recent television news story, Frank Arce works at a company that shreds up bark into wood chips.

In January 2014, something got stuck inside the machine and Arce went into the wood chipper to get the object. He thought everything was turned off. However, a fellow employee turned on the machine while Arce was inside.

Arce spent some time in the hospital with a broken pelvis, shattered ankle, bruised liver, broken leg and a cut that runs the length of his body on the backside. The cut was so deep, it crushed his knee. He said he received the right care quickly because of the training and help from his co-workers at the Swanson Bark and Wood Products Company in Longview, Washington. The company paid 100% of Arce's medical bills.

The Washington State Bureau of Labor and Industries investigated the accident.

Source: KATU-TV, Portland, Oregon, January 2014.

1. All workers must be trained to know basic hazardous energy program _____ and to how to _____ hazardous energy.

a. concepts, control
b. principles, prevent
c. objectives, observe
d. goals, monitor

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Three Categories of LOTO Training

Authorized, Affected, and Other employees must receive unique instruction and training.

There are three categories of employees that must receive training: authorized, affected, and other.

The amount and type of training that each employee receives is based upon the relationship of that employee's job to the machine or equipment being locked or tagged out and upon the degree of knowledge relevant to hazardous energy that the employee must possess.

In addition, employers are required to certify that effective training and retraining has been provided to all employees covered by the standard. The certification must contain each employee's name and dates of training.

Authorized employees

Authorized employees lock out or tag out equipment and service or maintain the equipment. Required training for authorized employees includes:

  • how to find and recognize hazardous energy sources;
  • the types and magnitudes of energy used in the workplace; and
  • how to isolate energy sources.

Affected employees

Affected employees operate equipment serviced under lockout or tagout procedures or work in an area affected by the procedures. An affected employee becomes an authorized employee when the employee performs service or maintenance work on the equipment. Required training for affected employees includes:

  • the purpose of energy-control procedures;
  • how energy-control procedures are applied; and
  • how energy-control procedures will protect them.

Other employees

Other employees work around or otherwise might be in the vicinity of equipment that is under lockout/tagout. They need to receive awareness-level training regarding the Energy Control Program. They need to understand that if they see LOTO devices, they are not to touch them.

2. Which employee category must know how to find and recognize hazardous energy sources, the types of magnitudes and energy used, and how to isolate energy sources?

a. Other employees
b. Affected employees
c. Certified employees
d. Authorized employees

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LOTO Retraining

Employees must be retrained for changes in equipment or machinery or for deficiencies in KSAs.

There are many reasons to retrain your employees. Here are a couple examples:

  • To introduce new or revised control methods and procedures as necessary.
  • To re-establish employee proficiency.

You do not need to retrain your employees on an annual basis. However, if your employees do not actually use LOTO procedures often, it's a good idea to practice the procedures at least annually.

Retrain employees when work conditions change. Authorized and affected employees must be retrained whenever:

  • their job assignments change;
  • energy-control procedures change;
  • equipment or work processes present new hazards; or
  • when they don't follow energy-control procedures.

Other triggers that indicate training may be necessary include:

  • periodic inspections reveal that there are deviations in the energy control procedure; or
  • the employer believes that there are deviations from, or inadequacies in, the employee's knowledge or use of the energy control procedures.

3. Authorized and affected employees must be retrained whenever any of the following occurs, EXCEPT _____.

a. When equipment or processes present new hazards
b. When their job assignments change
c. When energy-control procedures change
d. It has been a year since they were previously trained

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Tagout Training

If only tags are used, additional safety measures must be used.

There is an important safety practice to follow when tags are used during lockout/tagout: "Never use tags when locks will work." When tags are used in lockout/tagout procedures, you must train workers in the following limitations of tags listed below:

  • Tags are essentially warning devices attached to energy isolating devices and do not provide the physical restraint on those devices that is provided by a lock.
  • When a tag is attached to an energy isolating means, it is not to be removed without authorization and it is never to be bypassed, ignored, or otherwise defeated.
  • Tags must be legible and understandable by all workers.
  • Tags and their means of attachment must be made of materials which will withstand the environmental conditions encountered in the workplace.
  • Tags may evoke a false sense of security and their meaning needs to be understood as part of the overall energy control program.
  • Tags must be securely attached to energy isolating devices so that they cannot be inadvertently or accidentally detached during use.

4. When tags are used during lockout/tagout, it's important for authorized and affected employees understand that _____.

a. tags are necessary to provide a minimum level of physical security
b. tags are only warning devices, they do not protect the employee
c. tags may be removed only by affected employees after lockout/tagout is completed
d. tags are the preferred method of providing protection to employees

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Training Certification

A competent person should certify authorized employees as fully qualified.

OSHA Requirements

To meet basic Federal OSHA requirements in the USA, certification need only contain the information listed below:

  • each employee's name
  • dates of training and/or retraining

You should certify that training or retraining took place and that the employee is kept up to date. However, we encourage you to also include a statement of proficiency as well as the employee's identification number or a unique certificate number for training. It should also contain the signature of the trainer who conducted the training.

ANSI Guidelines

If your training program aspires to conform to ANSI Z490.1, Criteria for Accepted Practices in Safety, Health, and Environmental Training, you will need to certify authorized employees are:

  1. Initially qualified - at the conclusion of training, the trainer certifies the authorized employee has demonstrated proficiency in the learning environment, and
  2. Fully qualified - after training has been completed and while performing the lockout/tagout procedure on the job, a competent person certifies the authorized employee has successfully applied what they have learned.

5. To conform to ANSI Z490.1 lockout/tagout training guidelines, the employer should certify authorized employees _____.

a. have completed minimum OSHA training requirements
b. have completed classroom instruction basic lockout/tagout
c. are initially and fully qualified
d. have been trained annually

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LOTO Safety Procedures

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