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Glossary

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Foot and Leg Protection

Equipment designed to provide protection to the legs, feet and toes during exposure to situations with the potential for foot injuries such as falling or rolling objects, chemical or liquid exposures, piercing objects through the sole or uppers, and/or where the employee's feet are exposed to electrical hazards. Injuries that may occur when the proper footwear is not worn are chemical and heat burns from spills and splashes of acids and caustics, compression injuries, electrical shocks, and slipping.

The basic type of footgear is a pair of safety shoes; these come in many varieties and with various types of built-in protection. Foot and leg accessories choices for further protection include the following:

  • Leggings protect the lower legs and feet from heat hazards such as molten metal or welding sparks. Safety snaps allow leggings to be removed quickly.
  • Metatarsal guards protect the instep area from impact and compression. Made of aluminium, steel, fiber, or plastic, these guards may be strapped to the outside of the shoes. 
  • Toe guards fit over the toes of regular shoes to protect the toes from impact and compression hazards. They may be made of steel, aluminium or plastic. 
  • Combination foot and shin guards protect the lower legs and feet, and may be used in combination with toe guards when greater protection is needed.

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