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New Standard Makes Workplaces Safer

Published: Monday, September 20, 2004 - 22:00

The American Society of Safety Engineers recently announced the availability of a new standard that provides guidelines for protecting workers from potentially dangerous equipment and energy.

“Control of Hazardous Energy—Lockout/Tagout and Alternative Methods,” produced by the Z244 Accredited Standards Committee, provides safety requirements for preventing the unexpected release of hazardous energy from machines, equipment or processes. Lockout/tagout procedures such as the new standard are required by law, and ensure that machines or equipment under maintenance, construction or inspection are properly locked and tagged out from use to prevent accidents.

“The revised standard is significantly different than the 1982 version, providing new sections on design requirements and alternative methods of controlling hazardous energy, which existing federal and industry standards do not specifically address,” says Ed Grund, chairman of the Z244 Accredited Standards Committee.

For the first time, the standard provides for the use of alternative methods for controlling hazardous energy when traditional lockout/tagout prohibits task completion. It also explains how to conduct risk assessments when using alternative methods for controlling hazardous energy, including engineered safeguards, warning and alerting techniques, safe work procedures, training and personal protective equipment. In addition, it includes an annex on risk assessment analysis.

The standard is available for $37 for ASSE members, $45 for AIHA and ACHMM members and $53 for nonmembers. For more information, visit www.asse.org.


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