Good work boots keep your feet dry, help you stay steady when moving around uneven surfaces, and protect you from projectiles, sharp debris and falling objects. Excellent work boots have been known to set people back hundreds, which is why so many construction workers have fallen back to using cheaper footwear that simply doesn’t have the safety requirement to get the job done and keep you safe while working.
However, if you have a look around, and make sure you’re asking the right questions, you can get excellent boots that are waterproof, comfortable, affordable, and yet still keep you safe on the worksite. Something like the range from Ever Boots which have multiple styles that allow you to get the type of boot that is going to work best within your particular trade – and it is important that you do get something that will work in your industry, as no matter what the Health & Safety legislation may say, you know that the trades each have very different requirements to get the job done safely, quickly, and properly.
Are Your Boots Up To Code?
Did you know that there is an American Society for Testing and Materials that tests footwear designed to be used on construction sites to ensure that they meet a certain level of strength and protection?
When you’re looking to purchase new boots, look for which are certified to conform to the standard ASTM F2413. This means that they have been tested and have a protective safety top cap (although this does not need to be made a steel, and often is better if it isn’t). The standards are such that the boots should be able to protect your feet from injury if you kick something, from the top of your foot being broken if something lands of your foot, and minimize the chance of you needing surgery if you stand on a protruding nail. They should also be relatively unconducive – that means not only should they reduce the chance of electric shocks, but should also be resistant to heat, such as accidentally walking on hot Bitumen , as well as resistant to cold, meaning you shouldn’t get frostbite if out in snow. Click here to find out more.
What The Codes Mean
You will probably notice a whole pile of other alphanumeric codes next to the ASTM F2413 certification when you’re looking to buy boots. In fact, if you don’t see these written on the boot, then don’t buy them! You are looking for something that gives you the Impact rating and what the Compression rating is.
Normally on the tongue, but may be on the inside of the boot, or even stamped into the exterior, will be something that looks like this:
What this means is that your footwear meets the appropriate safety standard F2413, with the second line simply showing as either be M or F – which denotes whether the shoe has been designed and tested for Female or Male.
The third line gives you your impact rating per foot-pound. So, a rating of I-75 has been tested, and held strong, with an 75lb object falling 75 feet.
The fourth line is the compression resistance rating. In this case C-95 would mean that if an object of 2500lb was on your foot your cap would compress but would still have enough room for your toes to move, while a rating of C-30 would only tolerate a weight of 1000lb.
Why Does It Matter?
Did you know that the average amount of time taken to get back to work after an injury to your foot is up to 55 days? (see here) Injuring your wrist might see you off work for a few weeks, but your foot will have you down and unable to earn for a month and a half – and the two most common types of injury are broken ankles caused by a fall or a foot being fractured by something striking it.
Read reviews and either talk to the salespeople or read the full description if buying online, but make sure that you know what you need to be looking out for. Having a boot that has been tested for the level of protection that you need is a must.