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Foot Protection

Updated: Dec 20, 2021

Foot Protection
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Believe it or not, each foot contains 26 bones for support and 38 joints for movement! Your feet are a critical part of your body that you use everyday and, in some cases, enable you to do your job effectively.

We wear protective footwear at work to protect the foot from physical hazards such as falling objects, stepping on sharp objects, heat, cold, wet and slippery surfaces or exposure to corrosive chemicals.

There are two major categories of foot related injuries. The first group include punctures, crushing, sprains and lacerations. The second is slips, trips and falls.

Prior to choosing footwear for employees the following should be considered.

Identify the Hazards

Footwear should be chosen based on what hazards have been identified as

present and the task for which their wear is intended. This could mean different

departments in the business could require different brands and styles of


Carry out a ‘risk assessment’ to identify requirements of the protective footwear.

Some questions to consider could be:

• What tasks will the worker be performing?

• What materials are used by the worker?

• Is there a risk of objects falling onto or striking the foot?

• If there a risk of objects rolling onto the foot?

• Are there sharp or pointed materials that might cut the top of the foot?

• Is there a risk an object could penetrate the bottom of the foot?

• Is there exposure to corrosive or irritating substances?

• Is the worker exposed to explosive atmospheres, including risk to static electrical


• Is there a risk of damage to sensitive electronic components or equipment due to

the discharge of static electricity?

• Would the shoe laces become a hazard?

• Is there water or oil in the work environment?