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Having the proper shoes for the job is critical, but when it comes to safety shoes and boots, one size does not fit all. From our experience, we've seen how sub-par personal protective equipment, sloppy safety procedures, and improper training can costs companies big time. OSHA estimates that occupational injuries and illnesses cost businesses $170 billion every year.
Foot and toe injuries are no different. The average foot injury costs $9,600. Beyond the loss of production time, medical expenses and worker compensation, foot injuries account for an average of 10 days away from work. To prevent injuries and decreased productivity, employees should take breaks throughout the day to rehydrate and rest their feet. Employers can do their part to protect employees and help reduce the risks associated with daily work duties by investing in a Boot and Shoe program.
1910.132(h)(3) Addressed Metatarsal Protection: OSHA allows employers to use metatarsal guards or footwear with built-in metatarsal protection when metatarsal protection is needed in the workplace. If the employer requires employees to wear metatarsal shoes or boots, the employer is required to pay for the footwear. However, when the employer provides stand-alone metatarsal guards but allows the employee, at his or her request, to use shoes or boots with built-in metatarsal protection, the employer is not required to pay for the metatarsal shoes or boots.
Employers may contribute to the cost of metatarsal shoes or boots should they choose to do so. Some employers currently offer their employees a choice between using a metatarsal guard provided and paid for by the employer, essentially establishing an allowance system, and this is an acceptable practice.
ASTM F2413-11: Testing procedures standard that ensures each pair of safety shoes earns their safety rating and is capable of protecting workers against the hazards they were designed to protect against.
Defines the minimum performance requirements protective footwear must meet to resist a variety of hazards that can potentially result in injury in the workplace including:
IMPACT (I/75) resistance for the toe area of footwear.
COMPRESSION (C/75) resistance for the toe area of footwear.
METATARSAL (M/75) [impact and compression] resistance for the area of footwear.
ELECTRIC HAZARD (EH) resistance of the footwear.
STATIC DISSIPATIVE (SD) properties of the footwear.
PUNCTURE RESISTANCE (PR) properties of footwear bottoms.
Broken foot, stress fractures, broken toes and severe heel injuries are among the more common workers’ compensation foot injuries. Close proximity to machinery combined with the time employees spend on their feet can be a recipe for disaster. Employees who stand in the same place for an extended period of time put themselves at risk for weakened foot muscles, which can lead to sprains and strains. To avoid injuries, it is best to invest in safety footwear that provides arch support and good traction to accommodate the variety of environments employees may be exposed to.
According to the National Safety Council, “One of four victims of job-related foot injuries wear safety shoes. The remaining three are simply unaware of the safety benefits of wearing protective footwear.”
Whether your employees are full-time, part-time or contractors, there is no excuse for not having the proper safety shoes for the job. Safety shoes prevent injuries from slips, trips, falls, as well as electric shocks. With features such as puncture resistant and anti-fatigue insoles, employees are not only more comfortable throughout their shift but protected from harmful objects that can fall and crush, or penetrate the foot.
Plain toes are sturdy and designed to protect against rolling ankles and abrasion.
Protective toes use a toe cap made out of steel, composite, alloy or aluminum to protect toes from falling objects and collisions. Composite-toe overshoes are beneficial to employees who travel between worksites because they are easy to slip over most shoes and help to prevent injury.
How they protect: These boots are designed to impede the flow of electricity through the shoe and transfer it to the ground, reducing the possibility of electrical shock or electrocution.
How they protect: Static dissipating boots help transfer static electricity build-up from a worker’s body and into the ground. SD minimizes and regulates the amount of electrical build up throughout the day, while still protecting the worker from a sufficient level of electrical hazards.
How they protect: MT-rated boots extend the protection that a protective toe boot offers and protects the metatarsal (long bones that give the foot its arch) part of the foot. An internal or external metatarsal sleeve absorbs and transfers the energy from an object’s impact.
A safety boot and shoe program is an administrative system that transfers the manual task of managing boot and shoe processes over to the software. Some of these tasks include budgeting on a company or individual employee level, tracking eligibility and employee buying history, invoicing and proper footwear fitting.
Everyone is busy and many of us juggle multiple responsibilities at work. Managing a boot and shoe program in addition to your other tasks can be daunting. A digital tracking system can make your life much easier.
Easily keep your records in order, including invoices, purchases by location or department, accounts payable history, and employee purchase history. You can also track employee eligibility and keep your spending in check with your allotted budget. Simplify your day-to-day program operations with easily searchable records. You'll also have access to detailed self-service reporting.
Software that keeps track of everything in your program is quickly becoming a must-have. Going digital gives you the tools you need to quickly and efficiently manage your program, without the headache of dealing with stacks of paperwork.
- Food Safety
- Pulp and Paper
How long has this company been offering the program? What other companies are using the program? How much of the administrative tasks can be transferred to the software? Does the program offer eligibility tracking and usage reporting? Does it include footwear option search mechanisms? Do you have the ability to customize the program based off your needs?
Terra CLEANFEET® Odor Management
CLEANFEET® Technology is a unique microbe odor eating bacteria introduced to the footbed material of the shoe. The microbes feed off of sweat and odor causing bacteria to help keep feet clean and odor free. On contact with sweat the CLEANFEET® microbes begin producing enzymes that aid in breaking down sweat and other materials. The microbes overpower the other bacteria and replace them. When there is no more sweat to breakdown only water vapor and carbon dioxide are left behind.
Bogs Rebound Technology
Rebound, Bogs’ proprietary cushioning technology, provides a shock absorbing cushion and foot support that lasts the life of the product. Rebound performs well in cold conditions and doesn’t compact down like other cushioning materials such as ethel vinyl acetate, poly synthetic leather, gel, etc.
Timberland PRO Downdraft Featuring StepVent™ Technology
Waterproof boots can lock in sweat but Timberland PRO StepVent™ technology helps keep your feet dry and comfortable. As you walk fresh air enters through intakes around the ankle then your step pushes it through the midsole and into the toe. Additionally, our WICKWORK® lining helps pull sweat away from your foot and excess moisture is released through the footbed exhaust channel.
Wolverine CarbonMax™ Safety Toe Work Boots
Wolverine CarbonMax™ is a safety toe that uses nanotechnology to create the most advanced combination of protection and light weight comfort. The result is a toe cap that’s lighter, reducing strain on your legs and feet all day long. The CarbonMax™ walls are thinner providing more room for better comfort. This toe cap is designed to meet ASTM safety standards and provide protection from dangerous falling objects.