Choosing The Right Lockout Tagout Devices

Selecting the right lockout/tagout devices can be tricky, yet it’s crucial for maintaining a safe work environment. Did you know incorrect or substandard lockout/tagout equipment contributes to about 10% of industrial accidents? This blog offers exceptional guidance on choosing suitable lockout/tagout devices tailored to your needs and workplace setup. Dive in and discover how optimal safety can be just one click away!

Types of Lockout/Tagout Devices

Lockout/tagout devices come in various types, including padlocks, hasps, clamp-on breakers, adjustable cable lockouts, group lockout boxes, valve lockouts, and plug lockouts.


Padlocks serve as a traditional and highly effective lockout/tagout device. They’re easy to use, highly visible, durable, and come in various sizes to fit multiple applications across different industries.

Each worker should have a unique padlock with a key that they carry during work hours. This ensures the individual control of energy sources for safety purposes. Furthermore, most padlocks are customizable, allowing for color coding or personnel identification to enhance clarity during lockout procedures.

The hero image depicts a diverse group of workers standing confidently in front of a large machinery assembly. Each worker is holding a different lockout/tagout device, showcasing the variety of options available. The image radiates a sense of teamwork and empowerment as the workers exemplify the importance of choosing the right lockout/tagout devices for their specific tasks. In the background, a safety banner reads "Secure Workplace, Happy Workforce," reinforcing the idea that proper lockout/tagout measures lead to a safe and content work environment.


Hasps are versatile lockout/tagout devices that notably enhance workplace safety by controlling access to hazardous equipment. Typically crafted from durable materials like steel or aluminum, they provide an additional layer of security during energy control processes in industries handling machinery with multiple energy sources.

Hasps come with numerous holes that allow several padlocks to secure a device simultaneously, making them ideal for group lockouts since each worker can affix their padlock.

Opting for hasps as part of your lockout/tagout program can greatly boost the effectiveness of your protocols. Their visibility ensures clear communication about locked-out machines while their inherent durability withstands harsh industrial conditions, extending service life and minimizing replacement costs. Always comply with OSHA Standards to guarantee optimal safety and regulatory adherence.

Clamp-on Breakers

Clamp-on breakers are a vital element in lockout/tagout programs with their ability to ensure workplace safety effectively. These robust devices, easy to install and remove, provide an uncompromising solution for energy control on potentially hazardous equipment.

They’re explicitly designed to prevent electrical circuit breakers’ accidental or unauthorized operation. Constructed from high-quality materials, clamp-on breakers are durable and compatible with numerous breaker designs, adding flexibility to your safety plan. Furthermore, they’re visible enough for immediate recognition but compact enough not to obstruct the workspace. In line with lockout/tagout regulations, they are critical in maintaining compliance while enhancing Safety Lockout procedures.

Adjustable Cable Lockouts

Adjustable cable lockouts are versatile and effective lockout/tagout devices that can secure a wide range of equipment with various sizes and shapes. They consist of a flexible steel cable that can be adjusted to fit around the energy source, such as valves or switches, and then locked in place using a padlock.

The adjustable feature allows customization to different dimensions, ensuring a secure lockout every time. These lockouts are durable and provide an extra layer of safety by preventing accidental activation of hazardous equipment during maintenance or repairs.

Group Lockout Box

A group lockout box is an essential lockout/tagout device that allows multiple workers to control the energy sources of hazardous equipment safely. It is a central hub where workers can securely place their padlocks, ensuring the equipment remains inoperative until all locks are removed.

This eliminates any confusion or accidental re-energization during maintenance or repair work. Group lockout boxes also provide a visual reminder of who is working on the equipment, promoting accountability and enhancing workplace safety. When choosing a group lockout box, it is important to consider its durability, compatibility with different padlocks, ease of use, visibility, and compliance with OSHA standards to ensure maximum effectiveness in preventing accidents and injuries.

Valve Lockouts

Valve lockouts are an essential type of lockout/tagout device used to secure and prevent the accidental operation of valves. They are specifically designed to fit over different types and sizes of valves, ensuring that they cannot be turned or operated by unauthorized personnel.

Valve lockouts are typically made from durable materials such as toughened nylon or steel, providing a strong barrier against tampering. These devices often feature adjustable designs, allowing them to clamp onto the valve handle and prevent any movement securely. The bright colors and clear labeling on valve lockouts make them highly visible in the workplace, reminding employees that the valve is locked out for safety reasons.

Plug Lockouts

Plug lockouts are essential devices used in lockout/tagout procedures to prevent the accidental energization of equipment. They are designed to secure electrical plugs and prevent them from being inserted into power sources.

Plug lockouts typically consist of a sturdy plastic or metal housing that encloses the plug, with a locking mechanism that can be secured with a padlock or combination lock. These devices ensure that equipment stays de-energized during maintenance or repairs, minimizing the risk of electrical shocks and injuries.

Organizations can effectively enhance workplace safety by choosing high-quality plug lockouts and complying with OSHA standards for energy control procedures without compromising efficiency or convenience.


In addition to the commonly used lockout and tagout devices mentioned above, various other options are available on the market. These include electrical switch covers, circuit breaker lockouts, ball valve lockouts, gate valve lockouts, and pneumatic lockouts.

Each device serves a specific purpose in safely isolating hazardous energy sources. It’s essential to consider the unique needs of your workplace when choosing which additional lockout/tagout devices are necessary for your safety plan. You can ensure comprehensive worker protection and prevent accidents or injuries by evaluating the equipment and identifying potential hazards.

Considerations for Choosing Lockout/Tagout Devices

Considerations for choosing lockout/tagout devices include durability, compatibility, ease of use, visibility, flexibility, and compliance with OSHA standards.


Durability is a crucial factor to consider when choosing lockout/tagout devices. These devices must withstand everyday use rigors and provide long-lasting performance. A durable lockout/tagout device is made from high-quality materials that resist wear, tear, and corrosion.

It should withstand harsh environments, such as extreme temperatures or chemical exposure. Investing in durable lockout/tagout devices ensures that they will effectively secure hazardous equipment and prevent accidents or injuries.


Compatibility is crucial when choosing lockout/tagout devices for your workplace. It’s important to ensure that the devices you select are compatible with the equipment or machinery they will use.

This means that they should fit securely and effectively onto the energy control points of the equipment, preventing any accidental re-energization. Choosing compatible devices will help to ensure that your lockout/tagout procedures can be implemented smoothly and efficiently, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries in your workplace.

Ease of Use

One important consideration when choosing lockout/tagout devices is their ease of use. The devices should be user-friendly and straightforward, allowing workers to quickly and efficiently implement lockout procedures.

This includes easy installation and removal, clear instructions or labels, and intuitive designs. By selecting lockout/tagout devices that are easy to use, companies can ensure that employees can effectively protect themselves from hazardous energy sources without wasting time or encountering unnecessary complications.


Visibility is a crucial factor to consider when choosing lockout/tagout devices. These devices must be easily visible and identifiable to prevent accidents and ensure the safety of workers.

Bright colors, bold labels, and clear markings can help make the devices stand out and be easily seen from a distance. This is especially important in emergencies where quick identification of lockout/tagout devices can save valuable time and prevent potential injuries or damage. By prioritizing visibility, you can enhance workplace safety by ensuring everyone knows which equipment is locked out or tagged out at all times without any confusion or uncertainty.


Flexibility is an important consideration when choosing lockout/tagout devices for your workplace. A flexible device can accommodate different types of equipment and be used in various applications.

It allows you to secure various machinery, valves, switches, or plugs without needing multiple devices. This saves time and reduces the cost of purchasing specific lockouts for each piece of equipment. Additionally, flexible lockout/tagout devices are easier to store and manage as they can be used in different areas of your facility whenever needed. By opting for flexible options, you ensure your workplace’s safety measures are adaptable and effective.

Compliance with OSHA Standards

Compliance with OSHA standards is a crucial factor to consider when choosing lockout/tagout devices. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has set guidelines and regulations to ensure workers’ safety when working with hazardous energy sources.

By using lockout/tagout devices that meet these standards, you can be confident that you are taking the necessary steps to protect your employees. It is important to familiarize yourself with OSHA’s lockout/tagout procedures and equipment requirements. This includes understanding which OSHA approves specific types of devices and any specific features or characteristics they must have.

Importance of the Right Lockout/Tagout Devices for Safety

The right lockout/tagout devices are vital for safety in the workplace, preventing accidents and injuries, ensuring compliance with regulations, and enhancing overall workplace safety.

Preventing Accidents and Injuries

One of the key reasons for choosing the right lockout/tagout devices is to prevent accidents and injuries in the workplace. Lockout/tagout procedures are crucial for ensuring the safety of employees when working with hazardous equipment or during maintenance and repair tasks.

Employers can effectively control hazardous energy sources and eliminate the risk of unexpected startup or release by using appropriate lockout/tagout devices, such as padlocks, hasps, clamp-on breakers, and valve lockouts.

This helps to protect workers from potential injury or even fatalities by indicating that equipment is not to be operated until work is complete. With the right lockout/tagout devices, companies can create a safer work environment and reduce the likelihood of accidents occurring due to uncontrolled energy sources.

Ensuring Compliance with Lockout/Tagout Regulations

Compliance with lockout/tagout regulations is essential for workplace safety. Lockout/tagout procedures are mandated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to prevent accidental energization of machinery during maintenance or servicing.

By choosing the right lockout/tagout devices, companies can ensure they meet these regulations, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries. Properly implemented lockout/tagout programs protect employees and enhance workplace safety standards. It is crucial to select durable devices compatible with equipment, easy to use, visible, flexible, and in line with OSHA standards to maintain compliance effectively.

Enhancing Workplace Safety

Enhancing workplace safety is a crucial aspect of any successful business. By choosing the right lockout/tagout devices, employers can effectively minimize the risks associated with hazardous equipment and prevent accidents or injuries in the workplace.

These devices play a vital role in isolating energy sources and ensuring that machinery or equipment is properly shut down and unable to be operated during maintenance or repair work. With durable lockout/tagout devices, employees can confidently carry out their tasks without worrying about unexpected energization of equipment, ultimately creating a safer work environment for everyone involved.

Key Features to Look for in Lockout/Tagout Devices

  • High-quality materials ensure the durability and reliability of lockout/tagout devices.
  • The tamper-proof design prevents unauthorized removal or tampering with the devices.
  • Clear labeling and identification make it easy to identify the equipment being locked out or tagged out quickly.
  • Versatility allows for use with different types of equipment, ensuring compatibility.
  • Easy installation and removal save time and simplify the lockout/tagout process.

Learn more about choosing the right lockout/tagout devices for your workplace safety needs!

High-quality materials

High-quality materials are an essential feature to look for when choosing lockout/tagout devices. These devices must withstand repeated use, harsh environments, and potential tampering.

When selecting lockout/tagout devices, make sure they are made from durable materials such as hardened steel or reinforced plastic that can resist corrosion and damage. High-quality materials ensure the longevity and effectiveness of the devices in preventing accidents and maintaining safety in the workplace.

Tamper-proof design

Tamper-proof design is a crucial factor to consider when choosing lockout/tagout devices. These devices need to be designed to prevent unauthorized access or tampering, ensuring the safety of employees and equipment.

A tamper-proof design typically includes features like reinforced steel construction, anti-pick cylinders, and unique keyways that make it difficult for anyone without authorization to remove or bypass the lockout device. By having tamper-proof lockout/tagout devices in place, companies can have peace of mind knowing that their energy control measures are secure and effective in preventing accidents or injuries.

Clear labeling and identification

Clear labeling and identification are crucial when choosing lockout/tagout devices. These devices should have clear and easy-to-understand labels indicating their purpose and the equipment they are meant to use.

This helps workers quickly identify which device to use in different situations, reducing the risk of errors or accidents. Additionally, clear labeling ensures that everyone in the workplace can easily recognize lockout/tagout devices, making them more effective in preventing unauthorized access or operation of hazardous equipment.

Versatility for different equipment

Lockout/tagout devices need to be versatile to work with various equipment. Different machines and systems may have different locking mechanisms or energy sources, so the lockout/tagout device must be compatible with these configurations.

This ensures that workers can effectively isolate and control hazardous energy sources regardless of the specific equipment they are working on. Versatility allows for a more efficient and practical implementation of lockout/tagout procedures, reducing the risk of accidents and ensuring workplace safety.

Easy installation and removal

Lockout/tagout devices that are easy to install and remove are crucial for efficient safety procedures. When choosing the right lockout/tagout devices, it is important to consider ones that can be easily applied and removed without complex instructions or additional tools.

This saves time and ensures that employees can quickly implement the necessary lockout/tagout procedures, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries. Simple installation and removal processes enable the effective use of these devices during maintenance or repair work on hazardous equipment, enhancing workplace safety overall.

The hero image features a skilled worker wearing safety gear, holding a large lockout/tagout device like a shield in a heroic pose. The background displays a busy industrial setting with machinery and equipment, highlighting the potential hazards present in the workplace. The worker's confident stance and the lockout/tagout device symbolize the protection and control offered by using the right safety measures. The image conveys the message that lockout/tagout devices act as a shield, safeguarding workers from accidents and ensuring their well-being.


In conclusion, selecting the right lockout/tagout devices is crucial for ensuring workplace safety and compliance with regulations. Durability, compatibility, ease of use, visibility, flexibility, and compliance with OSHA standards should all be considered when choosing these devices. By investing in high-quality lockout/tagout equipment with tamper-proof design and clear labeling, businesses can prevent accidents and injuries while enhancing workplace safety.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. What factors should I consider when choosing lockout tagout devices?

When choosing lockout tagout devices, it is important to consider the type of energy source being controlled, the specific equipment or machinery involved, the durability and effectiveness needed, any regulatory requirements that must be met, and the ease of use for employees.

2. Are there different types of lockout tagout devices available?

Yes, various types of lockout tagout devices are available to suit different needs. These include padlocks, hasps, valve lockouts, electrical switch covers, cable locks, plug and cylinder locks, and tags with customizable information.

3. How do I ensure the chosen lockout tagout device effectively prevents accidental energization?

To ensure effectiveness in preventing accidental energization, selecting a device that securely immobilizes all energy sources associated with the equipment or machinery is crucial. Depending on the system’s complexity, this may involve using multiple devices or specialized mechanisms.

4. Do I need training on properly using lockout tagout devices?

Yes. It is essential for employees who will be using lockout tag-out devices to receive proper training on their correct usage and procedures for implementing them safely. This includes understanding how to apply and remove these devices and adhering to established communication and documentation protocols during maintenance or repair work.