SAFETY FOCUS: Importance of Proper Footwear for Operator Protection

Whenever PSE (Personal Safety Equipment) is considered, it’s important to include the proper shoes for the workplace and the operations you intend to perform.

Correct footwear can provide protection against most job site hazards, some that may be obvious and others not:

1. Some facilities specify lace-up boots in their requirements.

2. Steel or composite toe protection is mandatory to protect you from falling objects or heavy severed pipe sections.

3. Portable machining may involve oily or wet plant floors, muddy or sandy job sites, water, cutting fluids, etc. Soles should provide proper traction and non-slip characteristics.

4. A one inch or wider defined heel is needed, especially for ladders.

5. Leather uppers are preferred over nylon mesh or fabric.

6. Work boots should provide sufficient ankle support for standing for long periods, lifting heavy loads and walking long distances in the course of performing your work tasks.

Despite the obvious and often mandatory requirements for approved footwear, it’s important to remember that you’re going to be spending lots of time in your shoes.

Uncomfortable or insufficient boots is a distraction that you don’t need when you’re working with a heavy pipe!

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