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Gumboots covered in dust and dirt used when concrete laying.

Why Should You Wear Steel Cap Gumboots at Work?

Many significant industries in the modern world work operate in hazardous environments. Mining, construction, ship-breaking, agriculture, and logging, among others, are examples of these. In New Zealand, the government sets workplace safety standards to protect its workers. These include the mandatory use of personal protective equipment (PPE). Examples of these are steel cap gumboots which NZcompanies often require. 


A pair of gumboots is essential protective equipment in hazardous workplaces. They have saved people’s lives and provided users with the support, comfort, and convenience to help them get through challenging work every day.  


This article will focus on gumboots as reliable safety footwear that keeps workers safe from different work and environmental hazards. We will also talk about the unique features that make it different from other boots. 


Let’s first define this highly recommended pair of safety boots. 


What are gumboots?

A gumboot is a long, slip-on, and lace-free boot. It was originally called the Wellington boot. Introduced in the early 1800s by the first Duke of Wellington, it was a leather boot with a design derived from a military riding boot. It was only in 1852 when the West first manufactured the first rubber gumboot. 


Farmers were the first workers who benefited from the early versions of gumboots. These workers needed waterproof footwear while working on muddy and water-drenched fields. 


Today, gumboots come in different colours and materials. There are everyday gumboots that most people use during the rainy season because of their waterproof quality. However, the more durable and specifically designed pairs are the industrial gumboots. 


Industrial gumboots are made using pure, natural rubber. This material is environmental-friendly, odourless, and can withstand harsh conditions and constant wear. More importantly, gumboots can come in a variety of steel toe designs for added protection. 


What makes steel cap gumboots different?

A steel cap gumboot is a boot enhanced with an internal toe box. Made of heavy-duty steel, this protective reinforcement covers the front area of the toes. It is a strategic placement that protects the feet from compression or heavy objects. 


This feature is helpful if you’re working in the mining, construction, or manufacturing sectors where you operate heavy machinery. Steel toe gumboots are strong enough to withstand seventy-five pounds of maximum pressure. The pair of boots can also protect your feet from punctures and cuts. 


Aside from the benefit of this unique feature (not found in regular work boots), steel cap gumboots also include the same benefits as other rubber gumboots. What advantages can the combined protective materials of rubber gumboots and steel caps deliver? 


6 Benefits of Wearing Steel Toe Gumboots at Work

Workers who spend hours at construction sites, chemical factories, fishing vessels, oil rigs, industrial areas, mining fields, and similarly hazardous environments can benefit from steel toe gumboots. If you’re one of these individuals exposed to the risks of these environments, there are many reasons why you should grab yourself a pair of high-quality gumboots.  


Below are six primary benefits of wearing steel toe gumboots at work. 


1. Gumboots are effective anti-slip footwear.

You don’t have to worry about working on rugged terrains or wet and muddy surfaces when you have a pair of gumboots with you. The stability and firm grip of steel toe waterproof gumboots (due to their specialised, slip-resistant soles) can lessen the risks of slipping, tripping, and falling. 


Additionally, unlike regular waterproof rain boots, gumboots are durable and long-lasting. With proper care and use, a pair can last for decades while providing you with the same level of quality and protection. 


2. Snug gumboots are comfortable to wear.

As slip-on and lace-free protective footwear, gumboots are easy to wear. Gumboots have vulcanised rubber soles which make them more comfortable on your feet, even during long hours of working indoors or outdoors. Gumboots are also ergonomically structured with proper cushioning and support. These help individuals with their posture, especially workers who must stand for hours. 


Safety boots provide stability and support that can effectively reduce muscle strain. They can also reduce muscle soreness, especially in the lower extremities. The convenience and comfort that this pair of safety boots offer help prevent fatigue and reduce the risks of chronic musculoskeletal disorders. 


3. Steel toe gumboots are non-conductive.

Gumboots, especially pairs made of pure rubber, do not conduct heat and electricity. Their protective steel toe structures are covered and lined with rubber and other strong insulators. 


These features are best for electricians who are often vulnerable to high-voltage areas. Often, these work sites are remote and are extremely dangerous because of the hazards from stagnant water or static build-ups. Gumboots are choice footwear for preventing massive shocks and severe burns. 


4. Gumboots protect wearers from heat and chemical burns.

Excellent quality gumboots can withstand a temperature of over 300 degrees Celsius. Although made of rubber, they won’t warp, buckle, or melt. Aside from protecting your feet from toxic chemical spills or splashes, it also prevents burns and other hazards caused by extreme temperatures. 


However, keep in mind that steel tends to pick up outside temperature. It’s best to wear socks, at all times, as a secondary protective layer. Also, make sure that the safety boots you choose have a heat-resistant outsole. 


5. Waterproof gumboots keep your feet warm and dry.

Gumboots with steel caps are not just choice boots for hot environments. They are also in high demand during the winter months. These boots have deep insulation systems that protect you from harsh cold waves, common in extremely frigid environments. 


Gumboots are high-cut boots that protect a big part of your feet and lower legs. Combined with their water and oil-resistant surface, they can shield your feet from splashes and spills. Oil rigs, warehouses, and fishing vessels are just some of the workplaces that require gumboots. 


6. Steel toe gumboots help you access crucial work zones.

Hazardous work environments in New Zealand are not for the faint of heart. Every day, dedicated workers risk their lives to serve their communities and industries. Access to crucial work zones helps them do their job well and deliver the services that contribute so much to their region’s economic and commercial growth. 


Reliable safety gumboots in NZplay a significant role in keeping employees safe while working efficiently. Along with other PPEs and the guidance of workplace safety regulations, people responsible for growth and advancement within these industries can ensure work progresses by enabling safe access to crucial work zones. 


Getting your first pair of gumboots?

Now that you know the advantages of using steel cap gumboots, you must be excited to get your first pair. There are so many choices online. This safety footwear can come in different price ranges, brands, and sizes for men and women. Whatever brand or style you choose, remember this: Choose the gumboots that fit. 


There is a misconception that gumboots are uncomfortable to wear. The truth is that gumboots provide the most support and comfort. The problem comes when one fails to find a pair that matches their foot size and shape. 


How can you choose steel toe gumboots that fit perfectly? First, make sure that your boots are snug around your foot and ankle. Secondly, your boots should be looser higher up on your leg. Following this fitting instruction can help you fully take advantage of your new pair of steel toe gumboots.  


Lastly, remember that this pair of safety wear can be one of the most important investments that you can have. Make sure that you’re doing it right as this decision can save your life one day.

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