All workers engaged in construction activities need to wear no less than a short-sleeved shirt, long pants, and shoes. This clothing will protect you from hazards that are present at construction sites. If workers do not wear a shirt or have bare shoulders, they can suffer sunburns and cuts and abrasions.
Workers who wear shorts or have bare knees can suffer sunburn, burns from hot asphalt and tar, and cuts and abrasions from working on one or both knees or from falls and slips. Long pants will protect the knees and bare legs from these injuries.
Proper clothing for construction workers is to protect them from specific job site hazards. This is similar to wearing PPE to protect the worker from potential eye or head injuries.
Sturdy leather boots need to be worn by construction workers for proper foot protection. Traditional tennis shoes such as shoes with canvas tops, thin or soft soled athletic shoes, open toed sandals, slippers, dress shoes or other similar type shoes should not be worn.
The soles of these types of shoes are not strong enough to protect employee’s feet from puncture wounds caused by nails or other sharp objects at construction sites.
These types of shoes do not provide protection from burns or being splashed by hot materials.
What is a short-sleeved shirt?
A short-sleeved shirt covers the top of the shoulder and has material extending down the arm. There is no minimum length for the sleeve; the material only must extend over the end of shoulder and the shoulder should be completely covered.
What are long pants?
Long pants will have legs that extend past the knee when the wearer stands and leave no exposed skin on the leg.
Are tennis shoes or athletic shoes ever permitted at a construction site?
Athletic type shoes, or shoes made from leather or other substantial material with soft soles that grip the walking surface are okay if workers are working in areas where firm footing is required and there are no hazards to the workers feet from falling or moving objects. Workers nailing down asphalt roof shingles would be an example of this type of work.