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Volatile chemicals in shoes

More dangerous than you might think

Various chemicals are used during the making of shoes. They improve the quality and durability of the materials. All parts: the leather, textiles and sole are treated with chemicals, but also the adhesives and polishes contain a lot of chemical solvents. Because many of these substances are volatile, quite a lot of chemical fumes can be released from a new pair of shoes. The nice smell of a new shoe is less innocent than you might think. It often contains a mixture of carcinogenic, reprotoxic and neurotoxic vapours that can gradually affect health.

For consumers, the risk is very small, but when a lot of new shoes are stored in a limited space, the harmful vapours can accumulate. Shoe stores and warehouses are therefore advised to investigate whether the situation at their premises has no health risks, especially for the colleagues who work there all day.

An even greater risk exists when unloading trucks or containers filled with boxes of new shoes. Often measurements on these shoe containers show more than 10 times the permissible concentration of harmful vapours such as benzene. This means that individuals unloading these containers must take additional measures to protect themselves.

To measure is to know

You cannot evaluate the risk to your colleagues until you know exactly what vapours and what concentrations are present. The same applies, of course, to taking the appropriate protective measures. A DIY measurement is the quickest and easiest way to get clarity. You get a complete inventory of all chemical vapours with health risk assessment so you immediately know where you stand. You can schedule and perform the measurement yourself. The result of your measurement gets compiled in a clear report that meets the new standards.

Still have any questions? We are happy to help you!

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