Plant safety: Following lockout/tagout procedures

Aug. 2, 2022
A proper safety program can keep things safe while plant personnel keep things moving.

Of all the things that can go horrifically wrong in a food plant, some of the worst are the consequences of not following lockout/tagout procedures.

Lockout/tagout (LOTO) is a system for making sure that power to equipment gets, and stays, cut off when it needs to be. That happens when it’s being installed, serviced or otherwise in a situation where it could hurt someone if it starts moving unexpectedly.

LOTO sounds basic and maybe it is, but it doesn’t get applied consistently enough. LOTO violations are the ones most frequently cited in food & beverage plants by the U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). In the period from October 2020 through September 2021 (the latest available), of the 1,188 violations issued by OSHA to food & beverage companies, 259, or 22%, were for LOTO violations.

To learn more, read "Putting a Lock on Plant Safety" from Food Processing.

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