Step 1- Develop and document control procedures

To begin with a LOTO procedure, you need to identify devices and machinery to which hazardous energy control programs will apply. Document a step-by-step process for correct shutting down and restarting of this equipment, include its location and details that will help eliminate possible dangerous actions.

You should be as specific as possible in this step as the documentation will provide fundamental guidelines to authorized employees. Depending on the complexity of the equipment and its application, proper procedure documentation may vary from one to many pages.  OSHA explains what should be included in the documents as follows:  

A statement on how to use the procedures;

  • Specific procedural steps to shut down, isolate, block, and secure machines 
  • Specific steps designating the safe placement, removal, and transfer of lockout/tagout devices and identifying who has responsibility for the lockout/tagout devices;
  • Specific requirements for testing machines to determine and verify the effectiveness of lockout devices, tagout devices, and other energy-control measures.