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HAIX Footwear UK

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About HAIX Footwear UK

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  1. 2017 roundup: Productivity vs Injury Rates

    Between 2016/17, 802,000 trees were planted across England, an increase from the 642,000 trees planted in 2015/16. This follows the Conservative government pledge in 2015 to plant 11 million trees by 2020. To work safely and efficiently, coping with strenuous workloads in such busy times, you must be protected. Wearing the appropriate safety footwear is critical and can reduce the likelihood of you suffering an injury or developing a health condition whilst at work. Injuries and Illness in 2017 The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) 2016/17 statistics show in the forestry, agriculture and fishing sector, 15,000 workers suffered from work-related illnesses with 12,000 non-fatal injuries and 27 fatal injuries. The figures reveal safety gaps in this industry, highlighting where more could be done to improve protection. There are also pressing health issues that must be considered. The HSE statistics also show musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders were the most common work-related ill health condition to workers across the three sectors, accounting for 46% of all ill health problem, significantly higher than all other industries. Many of these cases could be linked to unsupportive footwear, lacking appropriate protection and safety features, ultimately making your working life a lot more difficult. MSK- where are we now? MSK disorders can develop through wearing safety footwear that is not fit for purpose and can damage joints, causing swelling of the legs. This could result in a range of problems for the feet including bunions and corns, steel spurs and even flat feet. General pain and discomfort around feet, legs, hips and lower back is also likely. If these problems develop all areas of your life could be affected. This might prevent you from working, possibly leading to a lack of earnings Focus on footwear Protective, durable and comfortable footwear is essential for your safety, helping to prevent injuries whilst also ensuring you don’t suffer from long term health problems because of work. HAIX is committed to developing functional footwear features for forestry professionals, meeting end user demand, continually setting new trends and exceeding standards to reduce health issues. Every pair of boots incorporates the latest materials and footwear technology to offer comfort and protection, with cutting-edge design. Key features in our boots that will help prevent MSK injuries and improve safety generally include: higher quality materials for better support to the foot and lower leg arch support to ensure correct posture sturdy soles to give a strong platform for a range of surfaces Gore-Tex membrane keeping feet warm and dry. chainsaw cut protection 2018 Busy times are ahead for the forestry industry and HAIX boots could be the key, helping to reduce incident rates and improve health statistics, ensuring continued growth in the forestry industry. Invest in HAIX boots and protect your health as well as the success of your industry. For more information visit, https://www.haix.co.uk
  2. Are your boots really waterproof?

    Simon Ash, UK Sales Manager at HAIX With the colder weather upon us, and heavy rainfall likely, your working conditions will become even more challenging. To cope with unpredictable climates, the protection your boots offer will become more important than ever. However, your ‘waterproof’ boots might not actually be as waterproof as you think, with the current minimum standard still allowing some water penetration. Do you know how harmful wet feet could be to your health? A picture of health If boots fail to provide the right level of waterproof protection and your feet become wet and cold, this could lead to serious health problems for the whole body. Wet feet are known to aggravate symptoms, weakening the immune system and reducing the blood flow to the nose and throat, allowing the body to be more susceptible to infections. Keeping your feet warm at 28-30 degrees and the body at a healthy temperature of 37-37.5 degrees is crucial in maintaining performance and wellbeing, also ensuring working time is not lost. Waterproof Learning the features that make a boot waterproof and understanding the consequences of not wearing the right protection could be the key to going home healthy and comfortable with dry feet. The EN ISO standard: 20345/20347 is the minimum European standard manufacturers should achieve for boots to be labelled as waterproof. The standard stipulates up to 3cm2 of water can still enter the boot. Whilst you may think your boots are completely waterproof, this is the basic standard, and water can still get in. A series of tests are conducted ensuring boots comply with the EN ISO standard. The first is a trough test where boots are subject to 1000 steps in a trough of water, for the equivalent of standing or walking in water for 10-15 minutes. The second test is the Dynamic Water Resistant Test involving a minimum of 4800 steps for the equivalent of walking or standing in water for 90-80 minutes. The trough test allows a maximum of 3cm2 water into the boot but the Dynamic test doesn’t allow any water ingress into the boot, anything above this limit, the boot fails to achieve the standard and is not considered waterproof. Preventing water penetration To combat water penetration, many of the boots designed by HAIX, also incorporate a GORE-TEX® Laminate that is durably waterproof, breathable and moderately insulated. The protection this offers is essential for providing the best protection for those working in unpredictable conditions. Each pore in the GORE-TEX® membrane is 20,000 times smaller than a droplet of water, ensuring the boot is completely and durably waterproof. The GORE-TEX® Laminate combined with the outer materials and manufacturing techniques stipulated by Gore also ensures water does not become trapped between the upper and the membrane, something that could stop the boot from performing as it should. Water intake not only causes wet fit but will also, reduce protection, and thermal efficiency within the boot. Internal components could rot, lessening material strength and encouraging bacterial growth as well as bad odours. Footwear incorporating the GORE-TEX® Laminate must undergo rigorous testing in a walking simulator ensuring absolutely no water penetration. The test involves 300,000 flexes for which is the equivalent of standing or walking for 80 hours in ankle high water, 300 times higher than the minimum EN ISO standard requirement. Check your features When working in the forest, you should ensure boots labelled as waterproof perform as you need them to. The GORE-TEX® Laminate provides you with assurance that your boots are completely waterproof. This will enhance your working life and also possibly benefit you financially, as boots will not have to be regularly replaced. As the sky is set to get gloomier, ensure your boots are waterproof or pay the price physically and financially. For more information visit, https://www.haix.co.uk/workwear/ or visit your local stockist, https://www.haix.co.uk/
  3. Preventing injuries for a successful future

    Simon Ash, UK Sales Manager at HAIX In the UK, the forestry sector is worth almost £2 billion annually, employing over 43,000 people. For the sector to keep achieving this kind of success, workers need to be properly protected in order to prevent costly accidents and injuries and to keep productivity levels high. The gruelling tasks todays forestry workers undertake everyday, means that they are increasingly exposed to risks that could impact health and wellbeing but what are the most prevalent injuries and how can safety boots help to prevent these? Disorders In 2015/16, in the forestry, agricultural and fishing industry, there were an estimated 15,000 cases of non-fatal injuries and 54% were musculoskeletal disorders, (MSD). The high level of MSDs in forestry is alarming and could be due to the everyday tasks such as carrying heavy loads, using machinery possibly with a fatigued posture and spending long periods of time in safety boots, walking on rough terrains. A particular set of MSD injuries that could develop because of this are work related lower limb disorders (WRLLD). WRLLDs can affect the legs and feet and in 2009, an estimated 94,000 people in Britain suffered from a lower limb disorder caused or made worse by their work. The most common WRLLDs are: Stress fracture- this is caused by high impact and weight bearing activities. Heel Pain- this includes the injury, plantar fasciitis that is caused by a repeated high impact movement. Morton’s Neuroma- This can occur when there is an increased pressure on the toes. Invest in boots The footwear you choose plays an important part in ensuring your risk of injury is reduced. Recently, a false footwear economy has developed and individuals have purchased low cost safety boots that lack the required protection. These models might be cheaper but feet could be exposed to repeated stress which can only lead to painful injuries. The best protection is found in footwear that is compliant with the government standard EN ISO 20345: 2011 and incorporates the right safety features, specifically designed for foresters such as chainsaw cut protection, safety toe caps and sturdy anti slip soles. To ensure you are protected with the best safety features, HAIX has a global reputation for producing high specification safety footwear. The company is committed to developing functional features in safety footwear to meet end user demand, continually setting new trends and standards. In each pair of boots, HAIX uses the latest materials and footwear technology to ensure footwear offers comfort, protection and cutting-edge design. Investing in high quality footwear won’t only help prevent and improve foot problems, it will also be effective financially, limiting the amount of times boots must be replaced. Stepping forward Wellbeing starts from the feet up and paying attention to your boots, ensuring you are wearing the correct safety footwear with the right features for forestry could mean you stay healthy and pain-free, in and out of the forest. For more information visit, https://www.haix.co.uk
  4. Simon Ash, UK Sales Manager at HAIX In the UK, the forestry sector is worth almost £2 billion annually, employing over 43,000 people. For the sector to keep achieving this kind of success, workers need to be properly protected in order to prevent costly accidents and injuries and to keep productivity levels high. The gruelling tasks todays forestry workers undertake everyday, means that they are increasingly exposed to risks that could impact health and wellbeing but what are the most prevalent injuries and how can safety boots help to prevent these? Disorders In 2015/16, in the forestry, agricultural and fishing industry, there were an estimated 15,000 cases of non-fatal injuries and 54% were musculoskeletal disorders, (MSD). The high level of MSDs in forestry is alarming and could be due to the everyday tasks such as carrying heavy loads, using machinery possibly with a fatigued posture and spending long periods of time in safety boots, walking on rough terrains. A particular set of MSD injuries that could develop because of this are work related lower limb disorders (WRLLD). #jscode# WRLLDs can affect the legs and feet and in 2009, an estimated 94,000 people in Britain suffered from a lower limb disorder caused or made worse by their work. The most common WRLLDs are: Stress fracture- this is caused by high impact and weight bearing activities. Heel Pain- this includes the injury, plantar fasciitis that is caused by a repeated high impact movement. Morton’s Neuroma- This can occur when there is an increased pressure on the toes. Invest in boots The footwear you choose plays an important part in ensuring your risk of injury is reduced. Recently, a false footwear economy has developed and individuals have purchased low cost safety boots that lack the required protection. These models might be cheaper but feet could be exposed to repeated stress which can only lead to painful injuries. The best protection is found in footwear that is compliant with the government standard EN ISO 20345: 2011 and incorporates the right safety features, specifically designed for foresters such as chainsaw cut protection, safety toe caps and sturdy anti slip soles. To ensure you are protected with the best safety features, HAIX has a global reputation for producing high specification safety footwear. The company is committed to developing functional features in safety footwear to meet end user demand, continually setting new trends and standards. In each pair of boots, HAIX uses the latest materials and footwear technology to ensure footwear offers comfort, protection and cutting-edge design. Investing in high quality footwear won’t only help prevent and improve foot problems, it will also be effective financially, limiting the amount of times boots must be replaced. Stepping forward Wellbeing starts from the feet up and paying attention to your boots, ensuring you are wearing the correct safety footwear with the right features for forestry could mean you stay healthy and pain-free, in and out of the forest. For more information visit, https://www.haix.co.uk View full article
  5. Safer Steps: Musculoskeletal injuries in forestry

    Simon Ash, UK Sales Manager at HAIX In the UK between 2015/16, there were 539,000 work related musculoskeletal disorders (MSK). Foresters undertake physically demanding tasks every day and wearing comfortable, supportive footwear is one way of reducing the risk of developing MSK problems. In this industry, a ‘false footwear’ economy currently exists. Generally speaking, individuals are tempted to purchase low cost and low quality boots in order to remain compliant and save money. Investing in the correct safety boots could help protect your feet, increase motivation, enhance productivity and reduce the risk of injury. What can cause MSK? More than 20% of injuries in tree work are MSK related. You complete heavy duty tasks, including manual handling of loads with the back flexed and twisted, often in low temperatures, or on slippery and uneven surfaces. Wearing low quality footwear could hinder you completing your tasks easily and efficiently. The wrong boots can damage joints, cause swelling of the legs and result in a range of problems for the feet, including bunions and corns, steel spurs and even flat feet. General pain and discomfort around feet, legs, hips and lower back could also occur. With 26 bones and numerous ligaments and muscles, our feet are the foundation of our body and need to be protected. Prevention Understanding the importance of supportive boots is critical to look after your health. Invest in high quality footwear- you won’t regret it. For more information, visit https://www.haix.co.uk Sources: www.hse.gov.uk/statistics/causdis/musculoskeletal/msd.pdf webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130107105354/http:/www.dh.gov. uk/prod_consum_dh/groups/dh_digitalassets/@dh/@en/documents/ digitalasset/dh_4138412.pdf http://www.hse.gov.uk/treework/health/msd.htm
  6. Simon Ash, UK Sales Manager at HAIX In the UK between 2015/16, there were 539,000 work related musculoskeletal disorders (MSK). Foresters undertake physically demanding tasks every day and wearing comfortable, supportive footwear is one way of reducing the risk of developing MSK problems. In this industry, a ‘false footwear’ economy currently exists. Generally speaking, individuals are tempted to purchase low cost and low quality boots in order to remain compliant and save money. Investing in the correct safety boots could help protect your feet, increase motivation, enhance productivity and reduce the risk of injury. What can cause MSK? More than 20% of injuries in tree work are MSK related. You complete heavy duty tasks, including manual handling of loads with the back flexed and twisted, often in low temperatures, or on slippery and uneven surfaces. Wearing low quality footwear could hinder you completing your tasks easily and efficiently. The wrong boots can damage joints, cause swelling of the legs and result in a range of problems for the feet, including bunions and corns, steel spurs and even flat feet. General pain and discomfort around feet, legs, hips and lower back could also occur. With 26 bones and numerous ligaments and muscles, our feet are the foundation of our body and need to be protected. Prevention Understanding the importance of supportive boots is critical to look after your health. Invest in high quality footwear- you won’t regret it. For more information, visit https://www.haix.co.uk Sources: www.hse.gov.uk/statistics/causdis/musculoskeletal/msd.pdf webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130107105354/http:/www.dh.gov. uk/prod_consum_dh/groups/dh_digitalassets/@dh/@en/documents/ digitalasset/dh_4138412.pdf http://www.hse.gov.uk/treework/health/msd.htm View full article
  7. Part 2 – Know your features

    Part 2 – Know your features In part 2 of this series on safety footwear standards, we highlight the importance of understanding the safety standards that shape your forestry footwear. Here we look at the specific features one would typically find in a forestry boot and why they are important. Class Features & Benefits SB Safety basic, 200 joules Toe Protection, Oil Resistant outer sole. (Minimum Requirement). In forestry, working at height and with heavy objects is part of the daily routine, and so toe protection is essential. This is the basic standard required for safety boots, showing that the outer sole is resistant to oil and can withstand a 200 joule impact. SBP As SB plus Mid-Sole for penetration resistance. Sharp objects in the great outdoors (that could include forestry equipment) pose a significant safety risk. Boots listed as SBP follow the same standards as the basic safety boot (shown above) but also come with mid-sole protection for penetration resistance. S1 As SB plus Anti-Static properties and fully enclosed Energy Absorbing heel area. Anyone who has had an electrostatic shock from a piece of clothing will know that this type of static charge energy can build up elsewhere in the body. S1 certified boots benefit from all of the features of an SB boot, as well as boasting anti-static properties. S1 boots also benefit from a fully enclosed energy absorbing heel, enabling you to be more comfortable when on the go. S1P As S1 plus Mid-Sole for penetration resistance. As with SBP, S1P provides all of the protection found in S1 certified boots but with additional mid-sole protection. S2 As S1 plus water resistant upper and absorption. S2 certified boots offer an upper with resistance to water penetration and absorption; a must have for anyone working outdoors in the UK! S3 As S2 plus Mid-Sole for penetration resistance and cleated outsole. The most common non-fatal injuries in the agriculture, forestry and fishing sector according 2015-16 HSE statistics were slips and trips. The S3 standard includes mid-sole protection against penetration and a cleated outsole. Cleated outsoles are external protrusions or studs on the sole of the boot that provide additional traction on soft or slippery surface. This is especially useful when working in wet or icy conditions as you can then be confident that your steps will be sturdy and unaffected by slips or trips, S4 200 joules Toe Protection. All rubber or polymer construction (waterproof). Anti-Static properties, Energy Absorbing heel area. Boots certified to an S4 standard are made of 100 % rubber or polymer making them waterproof and leak proof. S5 As S4 plus Mid-Sole for penetration resistance and cleated outsole. The S5 standard offers the same benefits of an S4 boot with the added mid-sole protection against penetration and a cleated outsole for additional traction on soft or slippery surfaces. We hope our guide will prove useful for when you’re choosing your next pair of forestry boots. The standards outlined in this two part series are just some of the ones you might come across, so if there is anything else you need to know, please feel free to get in touch with the HAIX UK team who will be happy to help you. For more information on HAIX and its footwear, please visit haix.co.uk or your nearest distributor.
  8. When buying a new car, the technical specifications of the vehicle influence your final decision. Do you need an automatic? Central locking? GPS navigation system? The same logic and careful consideration should apply to choosing your next pair of safety boots – how will you use them, and what features matter most to you? Forestry professionals need safety footwear to reduce injury risks when completing daily tasks. When purchasing safety boots, it can be easy to overlook the standards that distinguish a basic boot from specialised footwear. While you may assume that a standard launched in 2011 is less advanced than one launched in 2013, are you aware of what these two standards actually mean, and why both are important to you? In part 1 of this two part series on safety footwear standards, we look at the EN standards that have developed over the years to ensure safety boots do what they are supposed to. In part 2, we outline the various classes of safety boots and what you should expect from each one. Part 1 – Making sense of the standards ESD CEI EN61340-5-1 – ESD, or electro static discharge, is an electrical discharge caused by the transfer of static from one object to another. Footwear with ESD certification is designed to reduce the amount of static energy built up in your body. It means the footwear can protect sensitive electronic devices from electrostatic discharge. EN ISO 20345:2004 – This standard specifies that all safety footwear must have toe protection. This covers all footwear designed before 2004 and so will still be seen on older stocks. Products coming onto the market after June 2013 have to comply with the new and now more commonly used EN 20345:2011 standard. EN ISO 20345:2011 sets out new tougher minimum requirements for safety footwear. EN ISO 20347:2012 - This is an umbrella standard, and encapsulates many other, more specific footwear safety standards that identify special risks. These are relevant depending on the type of occupation the footwear will be used for. EN ISO 17249:2013 – This is the forestry standard to show resistance to chain saw cutting. The above standards are minimum requirements and all safety footwear has the potential to boast more. Being aware of these core standards and what they actually mean will ultimately help you to be safer at work and make the right decision when purchasing footwear. In the second post of this series we will discuss some of the most common features in forestry footwear. In the meantime, if there is a standard you would like to know more about, please contact the HAIX team who will be happy to assist you. For more information on HAIX and its footwear, please visit haix.co.uk or your nearest distributor.
  9. Believe it or not, our feet take us up to four times around the globe in our life time. The combination of 26 different bones, the shape, ligaments and muscles are naturally designed to withstand the physical stresses of everyday life., However, working in the forestry sector means being on your feet for large proportions of the day, often in changing weathers and therefore it is essential to have comfortable, supportive shoes to be able to complete work effectively and avoid long term health issues. As a specialist in orthopaedics and chirotherapy, sports physician, Dr Norbert Becker is a leading expert in footwear health. Here, he tells us all about the key points for consideration when selecting your next pair of boots to ensure ultimate protection and comfort… . The Sole of the Boot If the sole of the boot is too soft, the foot will not be given enough support to achieve sufficient momentum when moving forwards. This will cause unnecessary stresses and strains for both the feet and subsequently the rest of the body. Supporting you as you walk Boots should not impair a foot’s function but assist it, be it with non-slip soles, shock absorption or safety protection. Dr Becker’s top three tips: 1. The shoe should always be fit for purpose taking different working conditions into consideration , 2. It is better to try shoes on in the afternoon because the foot changes during the day and its volume increases slightly. 3. Ensure the fit is exactly right – that includes consideration for the lacing and allowing for toe caps. For the latest forestry footwear on the market visit https://www.haix.co.uk/forest/ or your local distributor
  10. Hitting the HAIX (part 2)

    In part 2 of Hitting the HAIX, we return to find out what John Trenchard thinks of his HAIX boots. John Trenchard, assessor and a verifier for Lantra and co-founder of Arbor Venture Training Ltd with over 20 years’ experience is testing the HAIX Protector Forest boots ahead of the APF show - so let's find out if he's impressed? Much of John’s work sees him venturing into the tree tops, either for tree care or to carry out aerial recovery training as safety at height is key for arborists. It is for this reason that he was particularly impressed to learn that the boots are far more flexible than he originally assumed. In addition, John was keen to point out that the Protector Forests also work well with foot ascenders. “The ascenders fit on really well and don’t make the boots difficult to work with.” In addition to working seamlessly with forestry equipment, such as the foot ascenders, John also discovered that HAIX boots incorporate a fast lacing system. Having worked to provide safe and effective boots for the legendary New York Firefighters as well as the German GSG-9 Counter-Terrorist Unit, HAIX has learnt that time is of the essence when it comes to putting on and removing their footwear, so many boots from HAIX, including the forestry footwear, benefit from the fast lacing system. As John explained, “You can lace up the lower part and once it is comfortable, lock it in place and lace up the upper part. After you’ve done the lower part the first time, there’s no need to do it again.” Be it as a trainer for Lantra or working with his company, John is always on the go so the fast lacing system isn’t going to stand in his way. So what is John’s resounding overall opinion? “Excellent comfortable, capable boots that are great value for money.” And you can’t say fairer than that. Having worn the Protector Forests in all weathers, in the air and on the ground, John has put them through their paces on a literal boot camp and has been left more than impressed! To find out more about HAIX and HAIX boots, please visit http://www.haix.co.uk or your local distributor.
  11. John Trenchard, assessor and a verifier for Lantra and co-founder of Arbor Venture Training Ltd with over 20 years’ experience is testing the HAIX Protector Forests ahead of the APF show - so is he impressed? From childhood farms to forests, Arbor Venture Tree Care’s John Trenchard is no stranger to the outdoors, so he was quick to swap his usual boots for the HAIX Protector Forests earlier this year. Having started working for his father on the family farm and helping his grandfather with tree clearing, John learnt to handle a chainsaw at an early age, so it comes as no surprise that he now has more than 20 years’ experience in the tree care industry. Nowadays for John there is no typical 9-5 working week. He divides his time between working as an arborist, a verifier for Lantra Instructors and training the new generation of arborists with Arbor Venture Training Ltd which he co-founded in 2005. Based in the beautiful surroundings of Hampshire’s New Forest, Arbor Venture Training is a sister company to Arbor Venture Tree Care and a Lantra verified training provider of chainsaw and tree climbing courses for beginners right through to those wishing to brush up on the latest techniques. It was while working for Arbor Venture Tree Care that John first trialled the HAIX Protector Forest boots during the removal of some beech trees and as he says himself, “I haven’t swapped them back since!” John soon discovered the Protector Forests are nimble with a good sole and grip. “When I first opened them I noticed they came higher up the ankle than competitors’ boots for greater support and this made me think they would be quite stiff”, John explained “but they are really very comfortable and capable when I’m climbing. They’re also great value for money.” It is not uncommon to find that comfort is overlooked when it comes to choosing the right safety boot. Cost is often favoured instead but this can lead to discomfort for workers and they don’t last as long as more expensive alternatives. Cheaper is not always better. As John rightly said: “The fact that I know they will last means I’m willing to spend that little bit extra because it will pay off in the long run.” A short term cost saving can lead to more regular purchasing of replacement boots as well as foot injuries and discomfort, all of which distract from the task at hand. It’s therefore important when choosing the right boot that you keep in mind the long term benefits, as well as ensuring that the boot offers the most important features for you. According to the Health and Safety Executive’s chainsaw PPE requirements, safety footwear should have “good grip and protective guarding at the front vamp and instep.” However, as with any PPE and as per the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992, it should be a last resort that is implemented after a risk assessment and attempts have been made to eliminate or reduce the hazard. As a sector, forestry workers face numerous hazards every day, including the use of machinery and tools, lifting and moving, repetitive movement and loud noise forming just some of the stated causes of non-fatal injuries. The risk of injury from machinery and tools was present in 80% of agricultural, forestry and fishing sector workplaces, while slips, trips and falls are the most common non-fatal injury in the agriculture, forestry and fishing sector with 22% of cases. When choosing the right safety boot it makes sense to check that you are not investing in unnecessary safety features. If the only hazard that you will encounter is slipping, it’s most unlikely that your boot will need to have a steel toe cap. With the right features, you can be sure your HAIX boots will be providing long term comfort and safety. It is this assurance that has led John to wear HAIX boots for more than 10 years. As he explains: “My first pair of HAIX were black leather in 2002. HAIX have always had a reputation for making good forestry boots and they were extremely durable and comfortable, but unfortunately not so good at gripping the tree. HAIX has improved a lot since then though.” Keep checking back for the next installment of John Trenchard's Protector Forest trial to read his resounding opinion. To find out more about HAIX and to purchase HAIX boots, visit http://www.haix.co.uk or a HAIX distributor.
  12. Footwear is an essential piece of equipment in any active job, from tree surgeons to firefighters and the emergency services. Not only does it have to protect, it also needs to be comfortable to ensure that wearers are not distracted by niggling pain in their feet. But when money is tight, the boots get tighter and with the post-Brexit uncertainty looming overhead, it’s nice to know you have a sturdy boot you can rely on. When choosing new boots, whether you’re a company manager making a decision on footwear for your employees, or an independent forester or arborist, the choice usually comes down to a balancing act between price and quality. Cut your costs too far and you’ll be investing in a very short term solution that may not make it through the British summer time. On the other hand, choosing a high cost boot is a commitment that needs to pay off in the long term. In an eight point plan based on recommendations from the Trade Union Congress, a safe and comfortable boot’s features should include being breathable, both in the upper and lining, it should have padded toe caps that are fitted properly to avoid rubbing, and a strong, flexible sole that offers shock absorption. This is in addition to a stabilising heel fit, removable insoles and fastenings or laces that secure the boot in place. However, many products claiming to meet European standards do not, so it is important when choosing or purchasing footwear that you request test data from the supplier. Further advice on this is available on the HSE website (role of manufacturers and suppliers of footwear). By ensuring that the boot you are choosing complies with each of these guide points, you can feel more assured that you are purchasing the correct boot for your needs and your budget. To find out more, visit https://www.tuc.org.uk/sites/default/files/footwear.pdf or share your boot choosing tips below. To find out more about the HAIX range of boots, visit our website at http://www.haix.co.uk or you can find us on Facebook and Twitter @HaixGlobal.
  13. Summer breeze, makes me feel HAIX

    As the song goes, a breeze is much appreciated in the summer but clearly Seal and Crofts had never experienced the great British weather. When you can’t be sure whether you will be caught out in torrential rain, or wilting in a searing heatwave (unlikely!), you need to dress for all eventualities, right down to your boots. It’s essential for healthy foot care that moisture is allowed to leave the boot, but it is equally important to ensure that your boot does not allow rain water in. While Gore-Tex prevents water from entering the main part of the boot, HAIX footwear is tested for wicking – materials in the boot’s upper must be non-wicking to check that moisture does not permeate into the boot, over the Gore-Tex lining. This process is integral to the Gore-Tex high quality and performance standard. Gore tests all upper components from the shoe's leather and foam to the stitching and laces to ensure that the whole boot meets the waterproof performance standards. So next time you expect sunshine and find yourself stepping into a puddle instead, you can be sure that your HAIX boots are equipped to keep you dry. To find out more about the HAIX range of boots, visit our website at http://www.haix.co.uk or you can find us on Facebook and Twitter @HaixGlobal.
  14. HAIX launch brand new boot: The Protector Ultra

    JimM - Many thanks for your interest in the new HAIX Protector Ultra. It has a steel toe cap. I hope this helps?
  15. Benefits of Gore-Tex

    Ever wondered what makes your HAIX boots waterproof and breathable? To answer this we need to delve a little deeper into the realms of science and 1950s computer technology. In a bid to protect computer cabling from fine heat fluctuations, Bill Gore launched W.L. Gore & Associates, Inc., in 1958 with the vision to explore the potential applications for a new polymer material, polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). Since then, PTFE has been used to improve stents for percutaneous coronary intervention, aerospace cables and for protective vents in devices such as mobile phones to ensure that they are dust-tight and water-resistant, without compromising the quality of sound transmission. In 1982, Gore Footwear was launched and in the early 1990s HAIX began using Gore technology in its boots. Gore only approves boots by companies that produce quality products that can withstand Gore’s intense testing process. This includes a waterproofing test during which boots are placed in 5cm of water and 300,000 steps are simulated to ensure that no water is let in to the boot. If the boot shows any lack of waterproofing, the boots are rejected and must be reassessed following adjustments. The boots are also tested for breathability to ensure they allow the half a pint of sweat our feet release to be transported away from the feet and out of the boot. HAIX boots are tested to this exact standard for waterproofing and breathability and as a result can be trusted to keep your feet both dry and warm. The ideal foot temperature should be regulated to between 28-32 degrees, even during periods of high physical activity. Cold and damp feet can lead to swelling, soreness, blisters and in some extreme cases infections, so it is essential that your boots are able to provide the breathability for this. By combining HAIX’s boots with Gore’s innovative membrane, HAIX produces boots that are a cut above the rest and you can be sure that whatever the weather, you will be protected with HAIX. To find out more about the HAIX range of boots, visit our website at http://www.haix.co.uk or you can find us on Facebook and Twitter @HaixGlobal

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