One of the bonuses of working in the construction industry is that you are unlikely to be told what color top to wear or how long your pants need to be. However, there is a uniform of sorts, and your employer has a duty to ensure you wear it.
Construction workers must wear protective equipment
As part of the guidelines that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets, specific protective equipment needs to be used in particular circumstances. Safety footwear is obligatory for anyone working in areas where there are the following dangers to their feet:
- Falling or rolling objects
- Objects piercing through the sole
- Electrical shock or discharge
Most workers on construction sites will, at some time, be exposed to one of those hazards.
What is protective footwear?
To qualify as protective footwear OSHA’s eyes, a shoe must meet one of three nationally recognized standards. Here are some of the things a good work boot will have:
- Protective toe caps: These could be of steel, alloy, carbon or composite material. The idea is to protect your toes if something falls onto them.
- Sole plates: These make the boot stiffer to walk in but are essential to protect you from objects piercing the sole of your foot.
- Good grip: If you slip over, you are likely to injure yourself. Some soles provide more traction than others.
- Spillage protection: The upper material should resist the spillages of chemicals or hot liquids.
Despite wearing the correct boots and any other protective equipment that your role requires, there is always the risk of injury on a construction site. If injured, you have the right to claim on your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance.