The 2014 statistics of The Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada established that a total of 2.5 fatal accidents occur in Canadian workplaces each day. In addition to these deaths, 239,643 accident reports or work-related illnesses are added daily to that number. Severe accidents are often caused when a body part makes contact with live or mechanical parts of moving equipment, hazardous chemical products or pressurized fluids that are suddenly released.
These accidents have a high human cost as they deeply affect the victims, their families, colleagues as well as the overall labour relations. Adverse effects can also be measured on the financial health, productivity and reputation of companies having to deal with the social responsibility of these accidents.
Prevention saves lives
Thanks to the efforts made by prevention programs across Canada, the number of serious accidents decreases every year, even if an accident is one too many. Proper work methods can contribute significantly to the safety of the personnel involved in regular tasks such as maintenance, repairs, handling and intervention. The variety and complexity of the different equipment found on site, their different power sources, the particular hazards and production time constraints make it difficult to accomplish the various tasks without having any risk involved. That is why, for example, the single shutdown of equipment should not be deemed sufficient when performing work in hazardous areas.
Lockout: major risk management
Lockout is a working method that drastically improves safety levels. Specifically, its purpose is to prevent an accidental release of energy from the equipment while accomplishing tasks such as maintenance, repairs and unjamming, as well as any other task done within the hazardous area.
To minimize the risks of accidents, your organization must adopt a lockout program, including procedures and documentation, describing, in particular, the work sequence for the lockout and the unlocking process.
The revision of the CSA Z460 Canadian standard on lockout makes mandatory the creation of lockout procedures for equipment and the tasks related to them. Many companies see the development of lockout procedures as an unattainable goal. However, in a well-structured program, creating lockout procedures adds rigor to maintenance management and production activities. Consequently, productivity gains were measured in large companies, but also in small and medium-sized enterprises.
Successfully implementing a lockout program
SPI Health and Safety has the best stakeholders for lockout procedures in Canada. With extensive hands-on experience, our team will proceed to the risk assessment of your work environment and assist you in implementing a comprehensive program for the control of your hazardous energies.
To facilitate the implementation and management of a lockout program, a customized solution exists: a web-based application dedicated to the production and management of procedures designed by SPI Health and Safety.
This software is available as a yearly subscription. It will help you save time in your lockout projects by simplifying the management and production of procedures, while ensuring a quick and permanent online access to the entirety of your data.
Our experts, members of the SPI Lockout division, are available to provide advice. Contact us for an assessment of your situation!