Below we have included some extremly useful information on safety boots, the standards which exist within this product category, the abbreviations which denote what standards the footwear adheres too, and also helpful stuff like maintenance. We have even listed some top tips from the HSE to avoid slips, trips and accidents.
All safety footwear must meet the minimum safety standards set out by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). The current standard for Safety Footwear across Europe (EN) is EN ISO 20345:2011. Under this standard, all safety footwear must now have toe protection against a 200 joule impact. This is the amount of energy the toe region can absorb before breaking. All new products must be manufactured and certified under EN ISO 20345:2011.
HSE – Health and Safety Executive
Choosing slip-resistant footwear from the whole host of products on the market can be difficult. Sole descriptions are varied, from ‘improving the grip performance’ to ‘excellent multi-directional slip-resistance’. Often, footwear is just described as ‘slip-resistant’ and the brochure does not describe the conditions for which the footwear is most suitable. Footwear selection has to take account of a number of factors in addition to slip resistance, such as comfort, durability and any other safety features required, such as toe protection.
- Accidents are expensive – there are many hidden and uninsured costs. With footwear, like any product, you tend to get what you pay for. Ensure you buy footwear which will do the job – this will not necessarily be the cheapest. But it may be more comfortable or attractive and it may last longer.
- Specify the main surfaces and contaminants which cause slip risks in your workplace, and seek your supplier’s advice on suitable footwear.
- Some generally slip-resistant footwear may not be suitable in specific demanding conditions. For example, footwear that performs well in the wet might not be suitable on oily surfaces or where there are sticky food spillages which clog up the cleats.
Key points on soles and walking surfaces
The sole tread pattern and sole compound are both important for slip resistance. Generally a softer sole and close-packed tread pattern work well with fluid contaminants and indoor environments. A more open pattern works better outdoors or with solid contaminants. The only sure way to tell is to trial footwear in your environment.
Tread patterns should not become clogged with any waste or debris on the floor – soles should be cleaned regularly. If soles do clog up then look for an alternative design of sole, e.g. with a wider space between the cleats and a deeper tread pattern. Slip resistance properties can change with wear; for example, some soles can deteriorate with wear, especially when the cleats become worn down. Have a system for checking and replacing footwear before it becomes worn and dangerous.
Footwear which has passed the EN test for slip resistance will be marked with one of the following codes, SRA, SRB or SRC. The codes indicate that the footwear has met the specified requirements when tested as follows:
SRA – tested on ceramic tile wetted with dilute soap solution;
SRB – tested on smooth steel with glycerol;
SRC – tested under both the above conditions.
SAFETY FOOTWEAR ABBREVIATIONS
HI – Insulation against Heat
CR – Cut Resistant Upper
WRU – Water Penetration and Water Absorption Upper
HRO – Outsole Resistant to Hot Contact
FO- Fuel Oil- Resistant Outsole
CI – Insulation against the Cold
WR – Water Resistant
M- Metatarsal Protection
AN – Ankle Protection
P- Penetration resistant
C – Conductive
A – Antistatic
I – Electricity Insulation Footwear
E – Energy Absorption
We stock hundreds of footwear products. From a simple chukka boot – to welders boots, metatarsal protection, rigger boots, safety trainers, executive safety brogue shoes to safety wellingtons. The choice is extensive and the value exceptional (we have something here to collect, or order for next day, to suit every budget).
As we at TIS are a traditional style of service-lead business, a family owned and operated independent distributor, our value and rapid service for local north east based customers extends to FREE SAME DAY LOCAL DELVERY. Unbeatabe!: Want to visit the Trade Shop then follow this link: VISIT THE MIDDLESBROUGH TRADE SHOP
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