In July 2018, there were around 7.2 million construction jobs in the US, the highest seen by the industry in over a decade. The boom in the construction of buildings and infrastructure is set to continue until 2026, with more workers needed in the years to come. With building sites come work hazards. And while management does their best to keep risks and accidents at bay by implementing safety measures and protocols, personal safety is still a top priority.
Workers are required to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) while on duty. Besides safety helmets, vests, eye, and ear protection, it is mandatory for men to wear steel toe shoes on-site. These are work boots that help lessen the risk of injuries and accidents in the construction site. However, even with these safety measures in place, more than 150,000 accidents are recorded in the construction industry each year.
Make work boots comfortable to wear.
Quality steel toe boots can be pricey and they can also be uncomfortable. There’s no denying that a lot of construction works would rather not wear work boots because they are heavy and cumbersome. Besides buying a quality pair of boots, make sure they fit well and that your feet can breathe. This is because you’ll be in these boots for up to 12 hours a day.
Wear socks. Work boots require work socks. The steel cap in the toe area call for thicker or specialized pair of socks to keep it from rubbing onto the cold steel. These socks have extra layers of padding which offer both comfort and an extra layer of cushioning. This will prevent blisters from forming as well.
Insoles help. Quality insoles are a good investment especially if the worker intends to stay long in the industry. The insoles should be of good quality since these will be integrated with the boots and were specifically designed to make wearing steel toe boots more pleasant and comfortable.
Break it in. There are dissenting schools of thought when it comes to breaking in steel toe boots. Some believe that wearing them and walking around in them for a few hours will help make them feel more comfortable. Others believe that regardless of how many hours you practice wearing them if the boots don’t fit you well, they won’t feel comfortable. So, be sure that your boots are the right size and width for your feet before you break them in.
Tips and Tricks When Breaking in New Boots
Construction workers have used various tips and tricks to break in their new work boots. The stick method is said to help to loosen new boots so they don’t pinch the feet. The stick is inserted into the shoe right over the spot where it feels tight.
Another method used is oiling or applying a leather conditioner to problem areas. When left overnight, it is believed to soften the leather, making it more comfortable to wear.
You can try out different methods to break in new steel toe boots, but be sure to always wear them. They’re meant to prevent accidents and fatalities in industrial sites.