Safety Consultant
Raghuvaran Chakkaravarthy
Environmental, Health And Safety
Hansa Vyas
A Good Learner Always
+4 Others

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Lets start a discussion on the various parameters for selecting a proper safety footwear for various industry. Let me clarify that safety footwear is not a fashion footwear in which toe cap has been incorporated. Its much more than that. Safety footwear protect wearer from physical, chemical & electrical hazard. I will try to answer all the questions related to safety footwear, its applicable standard & selection process.
From India, Kanpur
Thanks for starting such a discussion into the forum... I hope the forum members will get benefit from this initiative...
As I am basically from cement manufactouring plant, how type of safety footwear we should recommend for our workers?
Awaiting to hear from you...

From India
Dear Chuknoo,
Heartily welcome to citehr EHS forum. First of all sorry for late.
I am came from construction (Africa) here in Africa always hot can you suggest which type of safety footwear best for African weather.
Thanks in advance. . .
Dear all,
Note:: I will back to home for vacation tomorrow onwards will be off from site for 2 weeks if I get time try to participate bye see you soon….

From United States, Fpo
Dear Raghu,

In hot weather, foot perspire profusely & sweat if is accumulated within footwear will provide soggy uncomfortable feeling. Further this will attract breeding of bacteria/fungus & fouls smell. Therefore its very important that you select correct safety footwear. Here are few basics:

1. The low ankle (derby) is preferred style rather than ankle.
2. The upper material should be breathable so that air exchange happen across the upper material.
3. Waterproof leather is BIG NO as it seals the pores through which air exchange happens.
4. The best material is sued leather but its very difficult to maintain it in your industry.
5. You can try cotton canvas as upper material.
6. Few manufacturer provides two ventilation holes on instep area but they may allow water to seep into footwear.
7. Do not buy footwear with synthetic leather lining.
8. The best lining would be Cambrelle which is a Dupont product.
9. Ask your workers to store footwear in very airy area when not in use.
10. You will need footwear with steel toe cap & steel mid sole.

From India, Kanpur
hi Chuknoo,
we are having acid & work in it. The shoes we are using its sole do not last for more than 3 months.Gum boots r used by worker who directly deels with it.But i need selection for rest of the staff & also we hv electrowinning process so thaey should be shock proof too.
Kindly suggest..

From India, Udaipur
What about Food Industry - similar climate like India - Beverage manufacturing juice & dairy?. Can you please suggest which is good for the regular worker and for cleaning labours.
From Kuwait
Dear Hansa,
You need a good NItrile rubber sole footwear. If Nitrile rubber is not working, it must have lot of fillers as prices of nitrile rubber is quoting at all time high. The problem with you seems to be in upper material which has to resist acid. Acid resistant leathers are available & we manufacture it but it works in weak acid environment well. You may try a footwear with wide nitrile rubber foxing all around as you see in sneakers. Nitrile rubber footwear provide best Electrical Shock Resistance. Can you post few photo of damaged footwear for better understanding ?

From India, Kanpur
Dear Anish,
Food industry require cleanroom footwear. They are minimal stitches footwear. They are made from a new material called Lorica, which is washable yet breathable. Its around 4 time costlier than leather. Typically they are all white slip on footwear which can be cleaned by just wiping with a damp cloth. One very important aspect is the slip resistance. I am attaching a photo of the same.

From India, Kanpur

Attached Images
File Type: jpg Cleaner.jpg (311.1 KB, 99 views)

Dear Mr Sundaram,

Sole is the soul of the safety footwear.
Sole has to be looked on various parameters like:

1. Mode of attachment to the upper: Stiched, Stuck on, Goodyear welted/ Direct Injected (moulded) or a combination thereof.
2. Material of the sole which can be single material like rubber/PU/PVC/TPR/TPU or it can be a combination like Rubber+PU; TPU+PU etc
3. Density: Single or Double.

Typically in safety footwear you prefer a direct injected sole as the sole material attaches directly to leather fibre giving a very good long lasting bonding. Its important that material used in sole is also act as a good adhesive. PU is very good in this respect. In case of PU the direct injection is by two process. 1/ Direct Pouring Process which is inferior as compared to Direct Injection process where closed moulds are used & PU is injected with lot of controlled parameters.

The material to be used in sole depends upon Electrical, thermal & Chemical hazard against which footwear is to provide protection. PU is good upto 120 degree Celsius while Natural Rubber is good upto 160 degree Celsius & Nitrile upto 300 degree celsius.

Pu footwear are typically antistatic while rubber are Electrical Hazard footwear. For conductive footwear rubber sole footwear are used.

Nitrile rubber provide good chemical resistance against Acid, Alkali & Fat.


From India, Kanpur
Dear Dipil,
First my profuse apology in not able to reply immediately.
If you look at injuries sustained in Cement Industry, the biggest culprit is Slip Trip & fall followed by Falling objects & electrical injuries. There are sometime injuries due to hot cement.
You need a good EN marked Double Density PU soled safety footwear with steel toe cap& slip resistant sole. Obtain a slip resistance certificate which will show its marking as SRA/SRB/SRC. SRC is the best. For Hot area you need Nitrile Rubber soled footwear. Please have a good look at the padding in the collar as it prevents entry of the cement inside foot.

From India, Kanpur

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