Industry expert Simon Ash from footwear specialist Haix sheds some light on common misconceptions surrounding chainsaw safety boots, both in practice and within European Union standards.

IN the world of chainsaw safety, misconceptions about the effectiveness of protective gear can have dire consequences. Forestry workers need to trust that their boots work just as hard as they do to keep their feet protected and supported.


Forestry Journal:  The Protector Ultra 2.0 The Protector Ultra 2.0 (Image: Supplied)

While chainsaw protection is undeniably vital, one prevailing misconception is that chainsaw safety boots only need to be chainsaw-proof. However, the evolution of safety footwear has led to an increased emphasis on puncture resistance.

Modern chainsaw safety boots integrate advanced technologies such as composite materials, which provide exceptional puncture resistance. 

Lightweight flexible steel is also used for strength and protection, including in the Haix Protector Pro 2.0 and Trekker Mountain 2.0. These enhancements ensure foot protection against sharp objects encountered in hazardous environments, such as thorns, glass shards, or nails.


Forestry Journal:  Trekker Mountain 2.0 at work in the woods. Trekker Mountain 2.0 at work in the woods. (Image: Supplied)

The construction of uppers in chainsaw safety boots plays a crucial role in offering a harmonious blend of durability, flexibility, and protection. Misconceptions often arise regarding the ideal material for uppers, with some assuming that thicker materials automatically translate to better protection. However, modern chainsaw safety boots utilise a combination of materials that strike a balance between safety and comfort.

This approach ensures boots are both sturdy and flexible, allowing for optimal performance in demanding work environments.


The term ‘waterproof’ can be deceiving, as many boots labelled as such may not provide the level of protection expected. The EN ISO standard, specifically 20345/20347, establishes the minimum European requirement for boots to be classified as waterproof.

However, this standard allows for up to 3 cm² of water penetration, meaning water can still enter the boot. 

Rigorous testing is conducted to evaluate compliance, including the trough test and the dynamic water resistant test. While the trough test permits a maximum of 3 cm² of water into the boot, the dynamic test demands no water ingress. Any boot exceeding this limit fails to meet the standard and cannot be considered truly waterproof.

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When boots fail to provide sufficient waterproof protection, leading to wet and cold feet, serious health problems can arise. Wet feet aggravate symptoms, weaken the immune system and impede blood flow to the nose and throat, making the body more susceptible to infections.

Maintaining a warm foot temperature of around 28–30 degrees and a healthy overall body temperature of 37–37.5 degrees is crucial for performance, well-being, and minimising lost working time.


To combat water penetration effectively, many of Haix’s designed boots incorporate the Gore-Tex laminate – a durably waterproof, breathable, and moderately insulated technology. This integration offers essential protection for those working in unpredictable conditions. 

The Gore-Tex laminate ensures each pore is 20,000 times smaller than a droplet of water, guaranteeing complete and durable waterproofing.

By dispelling misconceptions and incorporating cutting-edge features, chainsaw safety boots are now equipped to meet the rigorous demands of forestry work, ensuring the well-being and productivity of workers in even the most challenging conditions.