Why you need safety footwear

All forward-thinking employers value staff as being one of their most important assets, so it's critical to promote the well-being of staff by protecting their health and safety.

When people think about PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), which is an essential part of any health and safety regime, their first thoughts are towards hard hats, goggles and ear defenders, but footwear that protects an employee’s feet from harm is of equal importance. There is also a major cost benefit to ensuring staff have safety footwear.

The risks and costs

News Toecaps

HSE estimates show that annually in the UK between 2015/16 and 2017/18 an average of 595,000 workers were injured in workplace accidents.

Depending on the working environment, the prime risks relating to workers’ feet are the slipperiness of any flooring, which can lead to slips, trips and falls, and the risk of foot damage through heavy loads being dropped or feet being run over by trolleys and vehicles.

Heavy objects falling on feet

Where hazardous work areas can cause foot injury through crushing and heavy objects being dropped, the most appropriate type of corporate footwear should include toe caps built into the boot or shoe’s design.

But it’s not just toes that can suffer crush injuries; so too can the metatarsals. The metatarsal bones are the five long, thin bones that run from the toes, up the bridge of the foot connecting with the cuneiform bones. They are easy to fracture and can be extremely painful, and cause limited mobility.

In fact, the metatarsal bones play a vital role in supporting the weight of the body. They have minimal soft tissue to protect them at the top of the foot, so they are easily injured and can take weeks to heal. Costly for employers and a major health concern for employees.

Because fractured metatarsals are quite common in the workplace (they are classed as a repetitive strain injury), a type of safety footwear has been designed with the express purpose of offering protection against this type of injury. They are called metatarsal boots.

Work boots with a met-guard component are designed to reduce or prevent metatarsal injury by absorbing the impact of objects falling or rolling up on the upper foot.

New met-guard boot from HeathBrook

Airlite Meta guard AL100

The new Airlite AL-100 safety boot from HeathBrook offers top of foot protection using an innovative product called ‘PORON-XRD’. A flexible material that hardens with impact, providing immediate protection from falling objects. A vital consideration to reduce the likelihood of suffering and cost in demanding and heavy lifting environments.

The boot is also slip resistant and tested to SRC standards. When a boot is SRC tested, it is tested under two separate conditions; ceramic tile made wet with dilute soap solution and also tested on smooth steel with glycerol. Having the new AL-100 not only means protection against heavy objects falling or rolling onto the foot, but considering slips and trips account for 1/3 of all personal injuries in the workplace, you have the extra reassurances that you are doing all you can to protect employees.

We are happy to answer any enquires about our new boot.