Boots for the Job – what sort of Boot do you need for Building

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The Health and Safety department issues clear guidelines over the use of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) across a range of industries. Various safety boots have different qualities and must be matched to the demands of each particular industry. When working in the construction industry it is essential to wear the correct safety boots that adhere to the code EN345-1. This stipulates that safety boots should have certain strengths to withstand the dangers of working on a building site where there is the danger of falling masonry or girders, accidents with power tools and an exposure to hazardous substances such as solvents or cement. The minimum requirements for a construction industry safety boot include a reinforced 200 joule steel toe cap to resist impacts and which is capable of withstanding weights of up to 1000kg. Soles must also be oil resistant, anti-slip, waterproof and provide a degree of insulation against extreme temperatures.

Style

Safety boots in a chukka style always incorporate generous padding around the ankles to protect from collisions and have tough laces that provide a firm but comfortable fit. High-quality, full grain leather or suede uppers offer the best resistance to corrosive acids or alkaline substances and will therefore protect the feet more effectively. For all day comfort, shock absorbers are incorporated into the heel which is no more than 2cm high and designed in a wider style for increased stability on all types of surfaces regardless of the weather. Wellington style rigger boots lace higher up the leg and were originally worn by workers on oil rigs. They are sometimes preferred by construction workers as they provide effective protection against skin irritations caused through cement dust. However, their acceptance in the industry is often debated due to the reduced amount of protection they afford the ankles and they are not always permitted on all construction sites.

Soles

Soles need to provide effective protection up to an impact of 1100N against sharp objects including metal, nails and broken glass. Durable soles are usually made of a high density polyurethane rubber (PU) or elastic thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) which both have effective anti-slip properties and incorporate extra midsole protection. This is in the form of an insert made from stainless steel although there are alternatives such as Kevlar and aluminium which offer more flexibility and are lighter in weight. Soles must be capable of providing effective insulation against extremes of cold and heat and resist sudden hot temperatures of up to 300 degrees Celsius. Anti-static properties are also included to prevent the build up of static electricity. Deep treads cut into the sole help to provide a firmer grip on unstable surfaces. Affordable safety boots that are suitable for the construction industry are readily available in a variety of tan, brown or black leather. They are available in a range of sizes from six to twelve. Data Power Tools have an excellent choice of comfortable safety boots.