Every organisation’s most important asset is its employees. These are not only the most costly component of the organisation, but also the most important. Laws stipulate that every employee must be protected during maintenance and shutdown of machinery.
Lockout and tagout applications are paramount during maintenance and shutdown procedures; however, this can be a daunting task to an organisation, as the incorrect choice of lockout and tagout padlocks and accessories will compromise the safety of workers during maintenance.
The Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) has guidelines and standards which are to be strictly adhered to, failing which financial or punitive sanctions by the relevant authorities could be incurred.
Master Lock product manager Conrad Geer explains the role that safety padlocks, safety lockout accessories and safety identification tags and signs play during maintenance and shutdown procedures.
“It is important to note that not all safety lockout and tagout equipment was created equal and, as with everything in the market place, there are good quality and lesser quality products available,” he states.
Geer says the use of Zenex thermoplastic in safety padlocks ensures the durability of the padlock, and also ensures that a non- hazardous lock is used in potentially explosive or corrosive environments.
Lock bodies are available in various colours and sizes and shackles are also available in different lengths, diameters and materials, this way ensuring that a safe solution is available for every application. More than one-million key differs can be guaranteed on customised systems, thereby eliminating the hazardous consequences of key duplications.
Geer states that all Master Lock safety accessories are designed with two major criteria in mind, these being that all accessories must be simple and easy to use and that all accessories comply with the OHSA standards.
OHSA requires that all lockout and tagout padlocks and accessories must be manufactured from durable materials, which can withstand the environment in which they are being used; they must be substantial enough to withstand removal without use of excessive force; they must be standardised in the facility by shape, colour and/or size; they must be unique from other locking devices and be used exclusively for lockout and tagout purposes; and the employee who installed the device must be clearly identified.
“Every piece of machinery must have its own procedure to ensure adequate lockout of its energy sources. “This could be as simple as locking out a circuit breaker or a valve in the closed position, to multiple lockouts of different energy sources to the machinery.”
Master Lock South Africa offers a free advisory service, where a qualified consultant will do a site inspection and advise management on which safety devices and padlocks are best suited for the facility.
Hall 6 Stand C01