The new Oliver Smelter Boots style number 25-298 and 25-299 are the result of an 18-month research and development project including testing and evaluation involving several Australian smelters. The boots underwent a final evaluation process conducted in conjunction with Boyne Smelters Limited at Gladstone in Queensland. A member of the Rio Tinto Alcan Group and Australia’s largest aluminium smelter, Boyne created an internal product evaluation team as part of the project, involving its key safety, occupational health and hygiene personnel.
Oliver Footwear spokesman Stuart Hull said the new safety boots featured a lightweight, protective, non-magnetic aluminium toe cap with an internal latex cushion liner to ensure maximum comfort. They also featured a high quality, heat resistant and flame retardant black leather upper with a quick release Velcro closure. Key seams incorporated three rows of heavy duty Kevlar stitching for increased strength, with the outsole of the boot resistant to 300 degrees centigrade of surface contact. The boots were also dip-tested in 960 degrees of molten aluminium, while additional features included an anti-slip sole with resistance to cuts, oils and acids.
Founded in 1887 in the regional Victorian city of Ballarat to cater to workers in the Victorian gold rush, Oliver Footwear is a fourth generation Australian owned family company.