Work Injuries caused by Footwear Claim *
An accident in the workplace * is an unfortunate event that has become quite common in recent years. A common cause of accidents at work is lack of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). By law, PPE is required by all employees who work in a potentially hazardous environment. PPE includes clothing, footwear, gloves, hard hats and protective masks for the face. Appropriate footwear is required by all workers who are employed in a hazardous environment. A large number of injuries * are caused by lack of footwear or incorrect protective equipment. Footwear is a basic item that will ensure the health and safety of employees in a number of different industries, such as warehouses, factories and kitchens. An employer who has not provided the correct footwear is likely to find themselves liable for any accidents or injuries sustained as a result of this.
An employer has a duty of care to ensure that an employee’s health and safety is looked after. This should be the number one priority in all industries. It is important that an employer carries out frequent risk assessments to identify and eliminate any potential hazards. This will also make them aware of the personal protective equipment that is required by their employees. Saying this, it is up to an employee to ensure that they are following regulations and wearing any equipment that is provided to them. If it is found that an employee has not followed health and safety procedures which are in place, then they will be found liable for injuries and accidents in the workplace *.
There are certain regulations in place that provide for the health and safety of employees in the workplace *. The first being the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Regulations 2007. These regulations outline the point that protective equipment should be provided to employees in a hazardous environment. They also say that an assessment should be carried out to determine what equipment is needed and for how long it should be work throughout the working day. It is also important that any equipment provided is maintained and kept in a good condition. It should then be replaced as soon as possible when this becomes necessary.
The European Communities Regulations 1993 are in place to ensure that no PPE is placed on the market unless it complies with the health and safety standards and requirements. PPE is deemed to be satisfactory if it has the “CE Mark”. It is up to both the employer and employee to ensure that protective equipment, especially footwear, meets the standards in place, so as to reduce the risk of injury if an accident were to happen.
Common Work Injuries Caused by Footwear
- Breaks and fractures
- Head injuries
- Back Injury
- Cuts and lacerations
- Sprains and strains
Lack of correct footwear
If you are not wearing the correct footwear it is likely that injuries will be sustained if an accident does happen. If you work in a potentially hazardous environment it is very important that you take the necessary precautions to ensure that your own health and safety is a priority.
Long periods of standing
Standing for an extended period of time in uncomfortable or unsuitable footwear can lead to a number of injuries. An employer who knows that their employees will be standing for a long time throughout the day should ensure that they are given frequent rest periods and should reduce the amount of time they are carrying out the same tasks.
Slips, trips and falls *
Those who work in an environment where there are a lot of liquids or slippery surfaces should be provided with non-slip shoes. In a recent study, it was found that non-slip shoes had reduced the amount of slip and fall accidents in a manufacturing plant to zero.
Misuse of equipment and machinery
Incorrect misuse of machinery could cause a number of accidents. If a piece of equipment was dropped or something flew from the machinery as a result of negligence then it could fall on the foot causing injury.
Debris and hazards on the floor
Hazards should be identified in a risk assessment carried out by an employer. If these risks are not eliminated, they can lead to a foot injury if the correct clothing is not worn. Depending on the work being carried out, an employer should provide employees would the right equipment.
If falling objects were to fall on the foot it could cause injury. It is important that if there is a risk of falling objects, such as in storerooms and warehouses, that steel cap boots are worn.
Walking on a hot surface in the incorrect footwear can lead to burns. It is important that the correct clothing is worn if you are working around hot surfaces and materials. Cold surfaces can also cause chilblains in the feet.
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