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The T.H.I.N.K Approach Before Servicing or Maintenance

dateJune 07, 2023

In the rapidly evolving world of industrial workspaces, safety cannot be overstated. Routine tasks like servicing or maintenance, which might seem mundane, can harbour potential hazards if not approached with caution. E-Square introduces the T.H.I.N.K approach, a comprehensive checklist that emphasizes safety awareness before diving into any task. It’s not just about ensuring that machinery and tools are safe but ensuring that workers possess a safety-first mindset.

What is T.H.I.N.K? A Deep Dive:

  • T - Turned off the Right Machine? In expansive industrial settings, the complexity of interconnected machinery makes it vital to ensure the correct machine's energy source is disconnected. The consequences of misidentification can be dire, so always double-check.
  • H - Handled the Energies as per MSP Placard? MSP Placards provide a roadmap for safe procedures. This documented guidance eliminates the uncertainty of energy isolation, ensuring workers adhere to standardized and safe practices.
  • I - Isolated & Verified all the Potential Hazardous Energies: Just turning off a machine isn't enough. All potential energy sources must be identified and neutralized. Before starting any task, always verify that every potential hazard is secured, providing an added layer of protection.
  • N - Notified all Affected & Other Employees: Communication is key. Any downtime or maintenance impacts the workflow, so keeping all team members in the loop ensures smooth operations and heightened safety awareness.
  • K - Kept the Stored/Residual Energy in Control: Some machines store energy even after they're switched off. Be it hydraulic pressure or a coiled spring, ensuring these residual energy sources are contained is crucial to avoid unexpected activations or releases.

Many serious accidents occurred when people did not take Lockout Tagout seriously. Some ignore the importance of Lockout Tagout very conveniently, saying, “Lockout Tagout makes my job more difficult” or “Lockout Tagout is huge over-kill for simple maintenance tasks.” Or, a common excuse: “I've got so much experience that I don't need to follow machine-specific procedures that show me how to lock out the equipment.”

Such indifferent & casual attitude towards safety, leads to serious incidences one might not have imagined. Remember, you can be at any level in the organisation, irrespective of the position that you hold, safety for every individual is a must. Take a minute, THINK, VERIFY, RATIFY and then act!

E-Square Compliance and Education Division
About the Author

E-Square Compliance and Education Division

A team of safety professionals and educators united to enhance workplace safety with essential Lockout Tagout knowledge. We offer expertise to foster safety compliance and effective LOTO protocols across industries.

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