Many jobs require the feet to be protected with work safety boots, and if you’ve been injured because the boots you’ve been provided were inadequate, then your employer may be liable for your safety shoes accident, the suffering you’ve borne as a result, and the costs you may have encountered because of the injury you’ve faced. Here, we go through the specifics of a work foot injury that was caused because the work safety boots you had been provided with, as well as talking about the personal injury claims process, how much you could potentially claim for a foot injury at work, and how Accident Claims UK could help you with a personal injury claim against your employer for such an injury. There may be some complicated information included in this guide, so if you’re unsure of anything within it, please do not hesitate to give us a call and we can clear up anything that you may be unsure of. You can reach our team on 0800 073 8801. We’d advise you to go through the information contained in the guide below first, however, as your question may already be answered.
Select A Section
- A Guide To Injuries Caused By Inadequate Work Safety Boots
- What Are Work Safety Boots And PPE Footwear?
- What Is A Lack Of Work Safety Boots Or Footwear?
- Regulations Concerning Work Safety Boots And Footwear
- What Obligation Does My Employer Have To Provide Safety Footwear?
- I Am Self Employed, A Contractor Or Agency Worker, Who Provides My Safety Footwear?
- Who Pays For My Work Safety Boots?
- Common Foot Injuries Caused By A Lack Of Work Safety Boots?
- Warehouse Injuries Caused By A Lack Of Work Safety Boots
- Building Site Injuries Caused By A Lack Of Work Safety Boots
- What Are The Potential Hazards Of No Wearing Personal Protective Equipment?
- Statistics Highlighting Accidents And Injuries Involving A Lack Of Work Safety Boots
- Calculating Compensation For Inadequate Work Safety Boot Injuries
- What Special Damages Could I Also Claim?
- No Win No Fee Inadequate Work Safety Boots Accident Claims
- How To Claim Compensation For Workplace Accidents Caused By A Lack Of PPE Equipment
- How We Could Help You Make A Work Safety Shoes Accident Claim
- Start Your Claim Today
- Essential Guides And Resources
The Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations of 1992 lay out what is expected if personal protective equipment is required in the workplace. For employees, this PPE must be provided to them by their employer, and it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that it is fit for purpose, as well as ensuring it is maintained and kept in an efficient state, repaired or replaced where necessary. There are a number of different industries that may require the provision of work safety boots, and these would fall under the PPE regulations. If an employer did not provide adequate work safety boots, or did not replace them when you reported them to be too worn to be efficient, and you suffered a safety shoes accident that led to a foot injury at work, then your employer could be in breach of the PPE footwear requirements, and therefore could be held liable for your injury.
Within this page, we will answer a number of questions about such situations, answering questions such as:
- What are the consequences of not wearing PPE?
- What are the PPE footwear types
- How should an employee go about reporting defective PPE
- What kind of foot injury at work compensation could be payable in defective PPE cases
- And more….
We will also offer advice on what to do if an accident occurs in the workplace, and how to make a claim for a foot injury at work without having to pay a personal injury lawyer upfront.
There are a huge number of reasons that work safety boots may be required within a workplace.
This might be to prevent slips (one of the biggest reasons for workplace injuries, along with trips and falls according to HSE statistics). People could often walk on slippery surfaces without knowing about it. However, if it is a requirement for someone to work constantly or for long periods of time on slippery floors, their risk might be heightened, and anti-slip footwear might be appropriate. However, work safety boots might also be used to protect against:
- Falling items
- Electrostatic build-up
- Heavy loads
Objects that fall on the feet could cause serious harm, including ligament tears, broken bones, and in extreme cases, amputation could be necessary. Steel-toed work safety boots could help protect the toes from pressure up to 200 joules. This means they could protect the toes and reduce risks to other parts of the foot if an item was to fall on the feet.
A PPE footwear definition could be found in the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations. It states that PPE is equipment that protects an employee against risk/s to their safety and/or health. Work safety boots could be included within this definition as they could protect employees from a foot injury at work in certain instances where there are risks of a work foot injury within the working environment.
When you do a job that requires the use of work safety boots as mandatory PPE, it is your employer’s responsibility to provide such work boots. While an employee has the responsibility to wear such boots and ensure they report any damage to the boots, an employer must ensure they are fit for purpose, checked, maintained, repaired or replaced where possible. Defective PPE must be removed from circulation within the workplace, and inadequate protective equipment should be replaced.
When it comes to ‘fit for purpose’ an employer must assess what safety shoes or boots could help reduce risks present within the workplace. For example, if a person is working in wet conditions, it could be appropriate for the employer to ensure that the work safety boots they require have good grip, whilst if heavy loads are involved, it may require the employer to provide boots with reinforced toecaps to help protect an employee’s feet should a heavy object fall on them.
If an employer does everything reasonably possible to protect an employee from harm, and provides the correct boots for the employee’s needs, but the employee does not wear them, then it could be deemed an employee’s fault they were injured. However, if an employee fails to provide such footwear, or provides substandard work safety boots, and an employee is injured, then they may be able to make a claim for compensation.
PPE footwear requirements could vary between industries and job types. However, the regulations that cover the provision of PPE are clear and these regulations could be applied to the provision of work safety boots.
They include the requirements that:
- PPE should be suitable, in terms of being appropriate for the risks involved, appropriate for the person using it (good fit, ergonomic, fit for the health and size of the person, effectively preventative as much as possible in reducing risk, and complies with the Personal Protective Equipment Regulations 2002.
- PPE should be compatible with other PPE that is required for the job
- An assessment should be completed before PPE is chosen
- It should be replaced, cleaned or maintained as appropriate
- A person using PPE should be trained on how to use that PPE effectively
- Equipment should be supplied from registered safety suppliers to ensure they comply with the personal protective equipment at work act
- And more…
If you feel that you have suffered a safety shoes accident that has caused a foot injury at work, and these regulations had not been followed by your employer, you could have cause to instruct a personal injury solicitor to take action on your behalf.
According to the personal protective equipment act, if PPE is required solely for use at work, then it must be provided by your employer if it is deemed necessary for the safety and health of an employee and protects them from known risks of the job or within the workplace they are operating in.
While your employer might choose specific boots and purchase them in bulk, other employers might have a policy for boot allowance that allows employees to choose from a range of suitable footwear. If you are told to choose your own, then your employer is responsible for making sure that the boots you choose are up to the required safety standards and are suitable for the job. Your employer must also ensure you are wearing the work safety boots correctly.
If you are an agency worker and are employed by your agency in the legal sense, then the agency would be required to ensure that you were provided with the correct safety footwear. If you are self-employed, or a contractor, then you would be responsible for providing the correct suitable PPE for the workplace you are working within.
Your employer has a requirement by law to provide safety footwear if it is deemed mandatory to have such footwear to protect you from known risks within the workplace or while doing your job. The costs of such footwear should not in any way be passed on to the employee, as it is deemed a mandatory requirement of the job.
If you are self-employed, your PPE could be claimed for on your tax return as a necessary cost.
The common foot injuries that could be caused by inadequate personal protective equipment could include:
Crushing – This could cause soft tissue injuries, as well as broken bones, tendon and ligament damage, etc
Slips and falls – These could cause injuries to many different parts of the body, including head, neck, arm, leg and back injuries
Sharp object punctures – These could cause cuts, lacerations and in extreme cases, amputations
Chemicals – These could cause burns, for example
Heat/cold injuries – These could include frostbite, burns and more…
If you have received a foot injury at work, which was caused by a lack of work safety boots, then you could make a claim for compensation. Why not speak to our team to find out how to go about claiming.
In a warehouse, not only could there be a risk of falling object from racking, but if manual handling of heavy items is involved, there could be a risk of an object being dropped on you in this manner. Other risks within the warehouse could include crush injuries from forklift trucks, pallet trucks and other manual handling aids. If it could be considered in a risk assessment that work safety boots would be necessary to reduce such risks, yet your employer had not provided it, or not told you where to obtain suitable work safety boots, and you suffer a foot injury at work, then you may be able to claim compensation.
On a building site, many of the same risks are present as in a warehouse, including the risk of heavy objects falling on you, being injured by moving vehicles and more. In addition, you may have to work at height or in wet conditions, which could require you to have a good grip on any work safety boots you wear for your job on a building site. Puncture injuries could also be a risk within such environments.
If your employer does not provide adequate, suitable safety boots, resulting in a work foot injury, then you may be able to claim compensation.
In any workplace, if you do not wear PPE when it is deemed necessary, you could be putting yourself at risk. However, if it is your employer’s fault you are not wearing PPE, these risks may make them liable for any injuries you could receive as a result of not wearing PPE.
Hazards from not wearing work safety boots as PPE could include:
- Slips and falls, leading to any number of injuries
- Puncture injuries
- Crush injuries from falling objects
- Crush injuries from moving vehicles and equipment
- Injuries from extremes of heat or cold
- Chemical injuries
- And more…
If you feel that your foot injury at work could have been avoided if your employer had taken steps to provide you with PPE, then why not speak to our team to see if you could have a claim.
According to RIDDOR statistics, which were used in a study set up to quantify how hazardous a lack of PPE was, between 2001 and 2002, there were 73 PPE related accidents to the feet, which made up 34% of that year’s statistics. The costs for this sort of injury within that year were thought to be £85.201m.
One of the findings of the full study, which covered 24,182 accidents and ranged between 1996/7 and 2002/3, was that in around 60% of the total accidents where PPE would have helped to prevent or alleviate an injury, PPE was provided but not used or there had been a failure for people involved to consider the fact that PPE should have been used. The indication from this is that the dominant contributor to such accidents could be seen to be people failure rather than equipment failure.
If you have had a foot injury at work that you feel your employer could be liable for, then you may wish to know an approximation of the compensation you could be looking to receive for such an incident. Whether you ask an advisor or use a personal injury claims calculator, the number provided to you would only be a rough estimate, because all claims are assessed on their own merit, and a claim would only really be valued after a medical assessment took place. However, below, we have provided a table with bracket guidelines for compensation payouts for injuries relevant to this guide. If you can’t see your specific injury, then please call us and we’ll be happy to let you know which bracket we feel your claim could fall into:
|Amputation (1 foot)||This is actually treated in a similar manner to a below the knee amputation because the ankle joint would be lost.||£78,800 to £102,890|
|Foot injuries (Very severe)||Permanent/Severe pain or a serious level of disability could be seen in this bracket. It might include a traumatic forefoot amputation, or a loss of a significant portion of the heel||£78,800 to £102,890|
|Foot injuries (Severe)||Unusually severe injuries to one foot or fractures of both heels could be included here.||£39,390 to £65,710|
|Foot injuries (Serious)||Less severity than the above, but with pain that continues that could be caused by traumatic arthritis. Future possibility of arthritis or requirement for fusion surgery may also fall into this bracket||£23,460 to £36,790|
|Foot injuries (Moderate)||Metatarsal fractures (displaced) which cause deformity and other symptoms that continue. Claimants in this bracket may require surgery in the future, and there could be a risk of developing long-term conditions such as osteoarthritis.||£12,900 to £23,460|
|Foot injuries (Modest)||Puncture wounds, ligament ruptures, and more. Assessed on the prevalence of permanent pain/deformity/disability and how much recovery is possible||Up to £12,900|
|Toe injuries (Moderate)||Fractures (relatively straightforward) or injuries that exacerbate a pre-existing condition could fall into this category||Up to £9,010|
|Toe injuries (Serious)||Injuries to the big toe that are serious, or where several other toes are crushed and fractured. Usually some residual disability exists.||£9,010 to £12,900|
|Amputation of the big toe||Around 29,380|
In addition to the amounts above, which are considered general damages, you could also look at claiming special damages for the financial costs that a foot injury at work has left you with. This could include earning losses, medical bills, travel costs, care costs and more. Even your future earnings may be compensated for if you are required to have further time off work in the future due to your injury, or if you could lose out on being able to work entirely after your accident.
We mentioned before that you may not have to pay upfront for legal representation. We at Accident Claims believe you should be able to make valid claims without having to pay out in advance for a lawyer so all of our lawyers work under no win no fee agreements. You will simply have to sign an agreement to pay your lawyer a percentage of your compensation if they are successful in gaining you a payout. You would not have to pay them more than 25% of your eventual payout, and it would not be due until your compensation was paid out, so you would not be out of pocket. If your lawyer didn’t get you a settlement but you had a valid claim then they would not take a success fee. This is all covered in an agreement you would sign called a conditional fee agreement. Should you wish to learn more about how this works, then we’d be happy to answer any questions you might have on the subject.
Put simply, you could follow the steps below to get the help you may need for a successful claim.
- Follow the rules for reporting a work accident to your employer
- Seek medical attention for your injuries
- Collect evidence in terms of photographs of any defective PPE, your injuries etc
- Collect witness details
- Keep any evidence of costs you have faced as a result of your injury
- Check whether you are within the personal injury claims time limit for work injury claims (usually 3 years from the safety shoes accident date but some exceptions exist – you can call us to check on these)
- Call Accident Claims UK for free advice and an assessment as to whether you could have a valid claim
At Accident Claims UK, we’re here to help if work safety boots were not provided to you and you suffered a foot injury at work because of this. We could assess your situation and provide advice and support about what to do next. If appropriate, we could offer to provide a solicitor who could help you bring a claim against your employer for your injuries and any costs associated with it.
We have an excellent reputation, years of experience and are known by our previous clients as being professional, friendly and caring. We’d be delighted to help you in any way that we can.
There’s never a bad time to get in touch with us. We’re available, when you need us, via phone (0800 073 8801), email (email@example.com) or via the contact form or live chat on the site. We’re ready and able to assist with your claim whenever you’d like to get in touch with us.
A Guide To Reporting Accidents At Work – This page on RIDDOR gives a wealth of information on reporting injuries and accidents at work.
All About SSP – The government’s page on SSP may help you work out how much you would get paid if you were on Statutory Sick Pay.
Who Should Report An Accident – More information on accident reporting from the HSE.
Building Sites And Accidents – We mentioned construction sites earlier on. Here is a guide that covers this type of accident in more detail.
Are You Self Employed – There are more details about claiming when you’re self-employed here.
Claiming For Broken Bones – Our guide on fractures and broken bones might be of interest.
Article by Jo