WORK BOOT INJURY CONCERNS

A major review has highlighted the importance of safety boots in preventing injuries but also their potential to cause harm.

Researchers from the University of Huelva in Spain analysed 27 studies from various countries and found that safety footwear often leads to skin injuries like calluses and dry skin, as well as more severe conditions like plantar fasciitis and musculoskeletal pain.

Workers reported discomfort, heaviness, and poor fit of their safety boots, leading some to abandon them altogether.

The review emphasises the need for safety footwear to prioritise preventing injuries rather than causing them and suggests footwear should be designed considering the biomechanics of the worker's job, individual foot characteristics, and environmental conditions.

Choosing appropriate safety boots should involve assessing the specific needs of each worker, including their foot morphology and job requirements. Ultimately, the goal is to ensure that safety footwear supports workers' physical function and does not contribute to injuries.

Do note that if an employer requires the use of steel capped safety boots that they must provide and pay for them to ensure that employees are able to carry out their work in a manner that is safe and without risks to health. Unfortunately our regulations in Victoria, unlike others interstate, do not explicitly mention this duty. You can read more about the provision of safety boots here

Access the research here

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