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Safety footwear protects you in more ways than one

Safety footwear is designed to keep you safe in more ways than one. Safety footwear now comes in different styles and designs including safety shoes, safety boots, trainers (sneakers) and clogs. They have several properties and it is up to you to decide which is the best fit for your work environment. These properties are as follows; Toe Cap Protection- protects toes from impact of up to 200 joules and compression of about 15,000 newtons. Traditionally made of steel, it can also be made from aluminium or thermoplastic polyurethane. Midsole Penetration Protection – protects feet from sharp objects or debris lying around in a work environment. It is done by inserting stainless steel or aluminium into the sole.

Electrical Resistance and Insulation – offers protection from electrical hazards and discharges static electricity from the body. The insulation characteristics keep your feet warm in adverse weather conditions. Heel Energy Absorption – can absorb up to 20 joules at the seat region. Water Penetration Resistance Uppers – this minimises the penetration of water and it is aimed at keeping your feet dry while working. Oil and Slip Resistant Sole – prevents skids and slips. The outer sole is designed to cut through grease and the footwear does not easily get damaged by petroleum products.

Not all safety footwear has all the properties in one. There are different classification and ratings depending on how many features they have. This is explained below;

Safety Ratings Explained

SB – Provides the basic 200 joules toe cap protection. Can also have additional features.

SB-P – Has the same features as the SB with the addition of the midsole penetration protection.

S1 – Provides the basic 200 joules toe cap protection and is classed as anti-static footwear. The sole is oil resistant and it has heel energy absorption.

S1-P – Has the same features as the S1 with the addition of the midsole penetration protection.

S2 – Provides the basic 200 joules toe cap protection and is classed as anti-static footwear. The sole is oil resistant and it has heel energy absorption and water resistant uppers.

S3 – Has the same features as the S2 with the addition of the midsole penetration protection.

S4 – Provides the basic 200 joules toe cap protection and is classed as anti-static footwear. The sole is oil resistant and it has heel energy absorption and is waterproof.

S5 – Has the same features as the S4 with the addition of the midsole penetration protection.

A casual attitude towards safety = CASUALTY. Stay safe and choose the appropriate footwear for your work environment.

Guest article by Hafis Kolawole-Oduntan on behalf of Sports Direct.

 

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