Date: Thu, 28 Feb 2008 20:54:11 -0600
Reply-To: "Harry J. Elston" <helston**At_Symbol_Here**FGI.NET>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: "Harry J. Elston" <helston**At_Symbol_Here**FGI.NET>
Subject: Re: Shoes in Lab
Comments: To: "Murphy,Dr. Ruth Ann"
Ruth et al.:

From a risk management standpoint it is best to have the feet covered with good, sturdy, non-skid soled shoes that are resistant to chemicals.  However, in an academic setting, it will be neigh impossible to tell students that they have to wear these kind of work-shoes to lab every week (or multiple times per week), particularly when they do not own a pair and a good, comfortable set can run upwards of $100 - that's a lot of I-Tune downloads

I recommend to colleges/universities that you go with closed shoes policy (no sandal/Birkenstocks) and mitigate risk by limiting quantities and concentrations of chemicals that are used.  Any closed shoe beats any sandal, every time, though maybe not by much.  The other problem is consistent enforcement of the policy.  It is much easier to enforce "no open shoes" in an academic laboratory (nearly everyone owns a pair of tennis shoes) than it is to enforce, "leather work shoes, non-skid soles, (blah, blah, blah)" on students who don't own a pair nor really want to buy a pair for that single Nursing-Chem 100 class.

Folks in the work-a-day world outside academics can make proper attire a condition of employment and employers generally have to pay for PPE or specialized work shoes.  Academia is much more difficult to enforce or require specialized so risk has to be mitigated in other ways.

Good luck.


-----Original Message-----
>From: "Murphy, Dr. Ruth Ann" 
>Sent: Feb 28, 2008 6:13 PM
>To: DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU
>Subject: [DCHAS-L] Shoes in Lab
>I would appreciate learning your requirements for shoes in lab.   Tennis
>shoes, etc., while they cover the foot, offer little protection against
>spills.  Thank you for any information you might wish to share.
>Ruth Ann
>Ruth Ann Murphy, Ph.D. 
>Professor of Chemistry
>Chair, Department of Chemistry, Environmental Science and Geology
>The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor 
>900 College Street 
>Belton, TX  76513-2599 
>Phone (254) 295-4542 
>Fax (254) 295-4237 

Harry J. Elston, Ph.D., CIH
Midwest Chemical Safety, LLC

Editor, Chemical Health & Safety

"I'm your wife.  I'm the greatest good 
you're ever gonna get"
           -Mrs. "Frozone", The Incredibles

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