As with any safety equipment, safety footwear also has regulations they must adhere to. The Canadian Standards Association has rules that can certify safety boots. When you are looking for protective footwear, there are symbols and codes showing that a specific pair has been certified to be safe to wear. These are all published in CSA Standard Z195.
When you’re shopping for work boots, keep in mind that the CSA puts patches on the footwear that they deem fit for safe use. Different patches mean different levels of safety, and with different purposes.
A green triangle means that the boots protect from punctures in the soles and the toes have Grade 1 protection. All Mooselog and Tiger Safety boots have a green triangle.
It means CSA approved for toe and sole protection not just for light industrial workplaces like warehouses, big-box retail, truck drivers and couriers, as well as heavier industries like manufacturing and construction sites.
A yellow triangle bumps that toe protection to Grade 2, meaning you have that slightly less protection.
Blue and white rectangle patches mean the boots do not have puncture resistant soles, but do have levels 1 and 2 toe protection, respectively. If there’s no risk of sharp objects, any boot with this symbol will protect your toes from having something heavy landing on them.
Seeing an orange Omega symbol inside a white rectangle indicates that the boot houses insulation against electricity. If you are working in a place with the potential for shock, especially with live wiring anywhere, you’ll want to find boots with this symbol. All Mooselog and Tiger Safety boots have got this patch. On the flip side, a red rectangle means the boot is electrically conductive, which works better when there is small amounts of electricity in an area. Knowing the difference between these two patches is important when working with any kind of electricity, because they serve two opposite purposes.
Yellow rectangles indicate static protection. If there is a chance that small amounts of static discharge can cause any threat to the work environment, you’ll want boots that can absorb that shock and disperse it safely.
The last two patches you are likely to come across are a black rectangle with M and a white one with a tree in it. The black one implies that it provides protection for your metatarsals, or the tops of your feet. It is also a requirement that these will have toe protection. The white rectangle means that in wearing these boots, you’ll be safe from chainsaw incidents.
Knowing certifications for different boots lets you choose the right tool for the job. Whether it be through punctures, blows, or electric shocks, there are a lot of potential threats to prepare for. Find out which ones your workplace is most susceptible to and make sure you are protected from them.
Looking for a solid pair of CSA approved boots? Take a look at Men's Waterproof Steel Toe Work Boots 7888.