Protective footwear worn in the workplace is designed to protect the foot from physical hazards, including falling
objects, stepping on sharp objects, heat and cold and wet and slippery surfaces. The operations you complete
everyday will dictate what type of footwear is appropriate protection against foot injuries.
According to the National Safety Council, approximately 130,000 disabling foot injuries and 40,000 toe injuries
occur annually. Shoe type, material and fit are all important characteristics of proper footwear. Overall, ensure
that your footwear is close-toed, non-slip and closed-heel. Footwear should also be comfortable, especially if you
are on your feet for long periods of time.
Good footwear should have the following qualities:
• The inner side of the shoe must be straight from the heel to the end of the big toe
• The shoe must grip the heel firmly
• The forepart must allow freedom of movement for the toes
• The shoe must have a fastening across the instep to prevent the foot from slipping when walking
• The shoe must have a low, wide-based heel