Choosing the right safety footwear for different working environments

 Peter Scully
  May 30, 2018

When trying to find the best pair of shoes, people are often faced with a difficult task, especially as there are so many different options to choose from, based on different brands and style. This very much applies to safety boots too, as brand and style of safety boots matter, but there is also much more to think about.

Not only do you have to consider how they look, but you also need to consider how they fit, how practical they will be for your job, how comfortable they are and also how they adhere to any dress codes. As your search and the whole decision making process is likely to be difficult and confusing, we have created this guide to help you to make the right decision for you.

Types of Safety Boots and Shoes

There are different types of safety boots and shoes for you to choose from, with different types more suited to different working environments than others. The most common types of safety boots in the UK are:

Composite Safety Boots and Shoes – This type of safety boot has a very similar construction to that of steel toe cap boots, but instead of being made of a composite material, they are often made from a combination of Kevlar aramid fibre, plastic and carbon fibre. The composite safety boots and shoes meet the same ANSI standards as the steel toe cap boot, proving the protection on offer with this type of boot.

ESD Safety Shoe – With ESD standing for electrostatic discharge, this type of safety shoe is designed specifically to protect the wearer of the shoe from transferring a static charge to anything else that they may come into contact with. Electricians tend to wear this type of safety shoe as it prevents them from transferring a static charge that may come into contact with any electrical products that are being handled. ESD safety shoes are also fantastic for people handling flammable materials as it prevents the risk of the static igniting it.

Metatarsal Safety Shoes – Possessing a similar look to that of composite safety shoes and steel toecap boots, metatarsal safety shoes also consist of protection to the metatarsal area of the foot in the form of a protective plate. There are two ways that metatarsal safety shoes do this, and that is either by displaying the protective plate above the tongue of the shoe or by placing it subtly below.

Safety Boot Protection Classes

An important point to note about safety boots is that different types will also come with different protection classes, so depending on your occupation, it is important to consider which is better suited to you. The protection classes are as follows:

SB – Safety Basic / 200 Joules toe protection and oil resistant outer sole.

SBP – SB plus mid-sole for penetration resistance.

S1 – SB plus energy absorbing heel and anti-static properties.

S1P – S1 plus mid-sole for penetration resistance.

S2 – S1 plus water penetration and absorption resistance.

S3 – S2 plus cleated outsole and mid-sole for penetration resistance.

S4 – Produced in rubber or polymer, 200 Joules toe protection, energy absorbing heel, anti-static properties and waterproof.

S5 – S4 plus cleated outsole, and mid-sole for penetration resistance.

Safety Boots in different Industries

Depending on the industry that you work in and the type of work that you do on a daily basis, it is likely that you will require specialist safety boots that are particularly suited to your role. Take a look at the best suited types of safety boots for different industries detailed below, sure to help you during your search for the best safety boots for you.

Safety Shoes for Restaurant Workers – When working in a kitchen environment, you are open to the possibility of sharp or heavy objects falling, and that is why you need protection. Stylish safety shoes are available to ensure that they are in keeping with your smart uniform.

Safety Boots for Constructions Workers – Working on a construction site often involves working with heavy materials, with many potential accidents able to occur at any moment. As a construction worker, you will certainly need boots with a steel toe cap, whilst it is also advised for you to opt for a metatarsal safety boot, to provide more protection to your feet overall.

Safety Boots for Engineers – As an engineer, you may well come into contact with electronic products and static charges, so the most ideal safety boots for you to wear are the ESD safety boots. However, if you don’t come into contact with electronic products or static charges, then the composite toe cap or steel toe cap boots will do the job.

Safety Boots for Electricians – Electricians are certain to come into contact with electronic products and static charges, and therefore ESD safety boots are the perfect choice. Protecting you from the risks that electronic products and flammable materials is vital, and this type of safety boot is perfect for exactly that.

Safety Boots for Roofers – This type of industry often involves handling solid and heavy materials, meaning that you need to ensure that your feet are protected from the risk of injury. A steel toe cap or composite toe cap boot would be the best option for you, with a metatarsal safety boot also sometimes required to provide complete protection.

Safety Boots for Drivers – Driving jobs often involve the moving of goods to and from your vehicle by using a pallet truck or a forklift, and this means that you need to think about protecting your feet. You should look to purchase a steel toe cap or composite toe cap boot for basic protection, whilst a metatarsal safety boot may provide the additional protection that you need.

Choosing the right safety footwear for different working environments

Peter Scully

Peter Scully is a marketing consultant for Image To Suit You, a supplier of safety clothing and equipment to the building and construction industry.

Popular posts

What Do Foxes Eat? Unknown Diet & Habitat

What Do Foxes Eat? Unknown Diet & Habitat

In this article, you will discover what do foxes eat? The foxes belong to the Canidae family. Their appearance resembles the dogs. Moreover, foxes have many similarities wi...

Sep 19, 2019
What Do Mice Eat? Surprising Facts About Mice
Sep 20, 2019
Other posts by Peter Scully
Tips to Consider when Converting Your Business Logo into Embroidery
Sep 27, 2018
The Switch to Digital TV - An Aerial Buying Guide
Jul 31, 2018
  • Add Comment