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Steel toe caps

Blundstone do not believe in compromising on safety, which is why we only use steel safety toe caps in all our safety footwear. Steel toecaps provide the maximum protection against impact, cut resistance, penetration resistance and protection against rolling forces. Specifically steel:
•Provides highest resistance against lateral side forces
•Cut resistant against aggressive power driven cutting equipment
•Penetration resistant against power operated tools such as nail guns
•Impact resistant – tests to a compression load of 15kN
•Heat resistant – matching sole temperature resistance demands of protective footwear being worn
•Chemical resistant against solvents, hydrocarbons, acids, alkalis and fuel oil
•Broad fitting – in width, height and length

Metatarsal Protection

The structure of the foot is complex, consisting of bones, muscles, tendons, and other soft tissues. Of the 26 bones in the foot, 19 are toe bones (phalanges) and five are metatarsal bones (the long bones in the midfoot). Metatarsal fractures are the most common traumatic foot injuries.
Functionally, the ankle and foot have two principle functions: propulsion and support. The Metatarsal bones play a major role in these functions. For propulsion they act like a rigid lever and for support they act like a flexible structure that aids balance, thus holding up the entire body.
Fractures to the Metatarsal bones can be caused by direct trauma, excessive rotational forces or overuse. As there is very little soft tissue to protect the top of the foot, bone injuries are common.
Blundstone has three boots within our range which provide metatarsal protection through the form of a metguard attached to the boot. For general purpose work , our new 917 leather boot, incorporates an exclusive to Blundstone, moulded pad of Poron XRD into the boot, providing impact protection whilst still enabling full flexibility. We have also incorporated this same moulded pad into our 018 gumboot, providing lightweight yet comprehensive protection for the mining industry. We also have a smelter boot, the 871, with metguard protection. To learn more about these products 917, 018, 871 (provide click throughs)

Electrical Hazard

Footwear and electrical conductivity properties
When it comes to categorising safety footwear from an electrical conductivity perspective, there are three general classifications – insulating (also known as Electrical Hazard, non conductive or electrical shock resistant), anti-static footwear and conductive footwear.
Electricity can be a serious workplace hazard, most people are aware of this and treat it with due respect. But it’s the invisible hazard that is not typically obvious, such as on a construction site where temporary electrical cables can be severed or exposed that can be the real danger. To help protect workers against such threats, many safety work boots are expressly designed to insulate the wearer from exposed electricity. These types of footwear are standard attire for electrical tradespeople, but workers in other trades and occupations are becoming increasingly more conscious of the need for this protection.

Anti-static footwear provides a level of protection against electrical hazard situations (wall sockets not high voltage) but not as great as Electrical Hazards footwear.
It is also designed to reduce the risk of electro-static build up by dissipating electrostatic charges, thus avoiding the risk of spark ignition of, for example flammable substances and vapours.
Anti-static footwear is tested in accordance with AS/NZS2210.3 where the Electrical resistance shall be no less than 100 kilo ohms and be no greater than 1 000 mega ohms.
A value of 100 kilo ohms is specified as the lowest limit of resistance of a product when new, in order to ensure some limited protection against dangerous electrical shock or ignition in the event of any electrical apparatus becoming defective when operating at voltages up to 250 V
It is a standards requirement that an attached “Information Leaflet” is supplied with each pair to ensure the product meets the desired protection requirements after sale.

Conductive footwear is specifically designed for handling explosives and it offers very little protection against electrical hazards.
Conductive footwear is tested in accordance with AS/NZS2210.3 where after being conditioned in a dry atmosphere the Electrical resistance shall be no greater than 100 kilo ohms .
In this working environment one spark of static electricity is enough to create a disaster so you want to have free flow of static electricity and very low protection from shock. This type of footwear should not be worn where all hazards from electricity have not been eliminated.
It is a standards requirement that an “Information Leaflet” is also supplied with each pair of Conductive footwear. This information available on request
There is a lot of confusion out in the market place regarding these types of footwear which is potentially confusing customers and worse – leading them to purchase unsuitable and potentially unsafe footwear.
In short it is up to the employer to recommend the safest footwear option for their employees. An easy way to determine which footwear is suitable would be to consider Electrical hazards footwear as your safest option unless the risk of spark ignition is greater than that of electrocution.
When working with computers sometimes this will require the elimination of static build up as this can cause serious damage to some components, however most persons in this situation would use an anti-static wrist band to combat the risk – simply put one end is an elastic band that fits around your wrist and which is connected to an alligator clip by a wire. The clip connects to a metal part of the computer chassis, which equalizes the voltage between the wearer and the computer, thus avoiding static sparks. Most importantly it should be noted that anyone working with monitors should not be wearing an anti-static wrist band or for that matter anti-static footwear, even if the monitor is unplugged CRT monitors operate on very high voltages and sometimes can hold these voltages for a long time even when they are unplugged.

When working with explosives neither EH or anti-static product should be worn.
It should be noted that footwear is intended for use as a secondary precaution, to be used in conjunction with primary safety measures. As noted above the condition of the footwear plays a significant role in maintaining the qualities stated, for example excessive sole wear, exposed steel toes, moisture absorption run the risk of taking the footwear out of compliance with standards.
Standards - information leaflet to be supplied by manufacturer with each pair market as Antistatic footwear, stating:
“Antistatic footwear should be used if it is necessary to minimize electrostatic build-up by dissipating electrostatic charges, thus avoiding the risk of spark ignition of, for example flammable substances and vapours, and if the risk of electric shock from any electrical apparatus or live parts has not been completely eliminated. It should be noted, however, that antistatic footwear cannot guarantee an adequate protection against electric shock as it introduces only a resistance between foot and floor. If the risk of electrical shock has not been completely eliminated, additional preventative measures are essential. Such measures, as well as the additional tests mentioned below, should be a routine part of the accident prevention programme of the workplace.

Experience has shown that, for antistatic purposes, the discharge path through a product should normally have an electrical resistance of less than 1 000 mega ohms at any time throughout its useful life. A value of 100 kilo ohms is specified as the lowest limit of resistance of a product when new, in order to ensure some limited protection against dangerous electrical shock or ignition in the event of any electrical apparatus becoming defective when operating at voltages up to 250 V. However, under certain conditions, users should be aware that the footwear might give inadequate protection and additional provisions to protect the wearer should be taken at all times.

The electrical resistance of this type of footwear can be changed significantly by flexing, contamination or moisture. The footwear will not perform its intended function if worn in wet conditions. It is therefore, necessary to ensure that the antistatic footwear is capable of fulfilling its designed function of dissipating electrostatic charges and also of giving some protection throughout the whole of its life. The user is recommended to establish an in-house test for electrical resistance and to use it at regular and frequent intervals.

If the footwear is worn in conditions where the soling material becomes contaminated, wearers should always check the electrical properties of the footwear before entering a hazard area.

Where antistatic footwear is in use, the resistance of the flooring should be such that it does not invalidate the protection provided by the footwear.

In use, no insulating elements, with the exception of normal hose, should be introduced between the inner sole of the footwear and the foot of the wearer. If any insert is put between the sole and the foot, the combination footwear/insert should be checked for its electrical properties.”

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