|Publication number||USRE40757 E1|
|Application number||US 11/029,250|
|Publication date||Jun 23, 2009|
|Filing date||Jan 4, 2005|
|Priority date||Oct 11, 2000|
|Also published as||US6618962, USRE43214|
|Publication number||029250, 11029250, US RE40757 E1, US RE40757E1, US-E1-RE40757, USRE40757 E1, USRE40757E1|
|Inventors||Charles E. Covatch|
|Original Assignee||Columbia Insurance Company|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (29), Referenced by (3), Classifications (8), Legal Events (3)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This is a Reissue patent application of U.S. Pat. No. 6,618,962 issued Sep. 16, 2003.
This invention relates to footwear, and more particularly to safety footwear.
In harsh and dangerous environments (e.g., construction and lumber operations), workers often wear heavy-duty work shoes or work boots to protect their feet from injury as well to provide comfort and support. Indeed, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has set forth regulations for the types of work boots and work shoes to be used by workers in certain occupations including construction and mining.
Work boots and work shoes used in such environments typically have soles and uppers fabricated of heavier and durable materials. In certain environments, additional protective features may be constructed within the work boot or work shoe. For example, where there is a risk of heavy articles being dropped on the wearer's foot, steel toes, metatarsal guards, and puncture-proof covers are typically incorporated into or over the upper. Similarly, in high voltage environments, thicker and higher dielectric materials are used in fabrication of the soles of the work boots and work shoes.
In a general aspect of the invention, an instep guard for use in footwear to protect the metatarsal region of the a foot includes an elastic support having hollow passages, and a shape and size commensurate with the instep section of the footwear.
In another general aspect of the invention, footwear for protecting a foot includes an upper defining an opening for receiving a wearer's foot and an outsole attached to the upper, the upper further including an instep guard positioned at an instep portion and having the features described above.
Embodiments of the invention may include one or more of the following features. The instep guard includes a sheet and a plurality of support members extending from the sheet to define the hollow passages, which are filled with air. The elastic sheet and the support members define at least some of the hollow passages. The hollow passages are elongated and at least one of the passages has a cross-section that is circular, ovoid, or triangular in shape. The support members may define two different types of hollow passages, one of which has a cross section of a first shape and the other of which has a second cross section shape. The instep guard further includes a second sheet attached to the first sheet by the support members. The instep guard may be formed of a flexible, resilient material such as rubber.
The instep guard is positioned on an underside of the instep portion of the footwear. For example, a liner is positioned beneath the instep portion of the footwear and the instep guard is then positioned on the underside of the instep portion by sewing the liner to the instep portion around the instep guard. The footwear further includes a steel toe positioned on a toe portion of the upper, and the instep guard is attached to the toe portion.
Among other advantages, the instep guard protects the metatarsal region of the foot from blows or forces that could, otherwise, injure the foot. The elastic nature of the instep guard and the air-filled channels make the footwear comfortable to the wearer. The instep guard provides sufficient protection against impacts that a wearer may be subjected to in a harsh environment.
The details of one or more embodiments of the invention are set forth in the accompanying drawings and the description below. Other features, objects, and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the description and drawings, and from the claims.
Like reference symbols in the various drawings indicate like elements.
Vamp 18 has an instep portion 26 that covers the metatarsal region of the wearer's foot when the shoe is worn. As will be described below in greater detail, shoe 12 includes an instep guard 40 (
A number of embodiments of the invention have been described. Nevertheless, it will be understood that various modifications may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. For example, the air-filled channels may have any shape or configuration so long as they provide the necessary protection to metatarsals. For example, they need not be parallel or elongated. Similarly, the instep guard does not have the same shape as the instep portion of the shoe 12. For example, it could be larger than the instep portion so long as it provides protection to the instep portion. The instep guard may be used with a shoe that does not include a steel toe.
Accordingly, other embodiments are within the scope of the following claims.
|Cited Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
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|US6170174 *||Apr 20, 1998||Jan 9, 2001||Robert J. Gesso||Shock absorbing liner for baseball shoe|
|US6618962||Oct 11, 2000||Sep 16, 2003||Columbia Insurance Company||Metatarsal protector|
|BE522514A||Title not available|
|CH571834A5||Title not available|
|DE1103811B||Apr 23, 1958||Mar 30, 1961||Hans Schabsky||Sicherheitsschuh|
|DE2426727A1||Jun 1, 1974||Dec 4, 1975||Ruhrkohle Ag||Schuhwerk, insbesondere stiefel, der in seinem oberteil einen verschluss und zur unfallverhuetung mindestens einen mittelfussschutz aufweist|
|DE2536443A1||Aug 16, 1975||Feb 17, 1977||Ruhrkohle Ag||Safety boot with toe cap and protective plates - has metatarsal plate secured between uppers and inner shoe|
|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US8635789 *||Oct 10, 2012||Jan 28, 2014||Tbl Licensing Llc||Protection devices for use in shoes or other products|
|US8943708||Oct 10, 2012||Feb 3, 2015||TBL Licsensing LLC||Anti-fatigue ply rib construction|
|US20130091730 *||Oct 10, 2012||Apr 18, 2013||Tbl Licensing Llc||Protection devices for use in shoes or other products|
|U.S. Classification||36/72.00R, 36/96, 36/71|
|Cooperative Classification||A43B7/32, A43B23/087|
|European Classification||A43B23/08T8P, A43B7/32|
|Apr 25, 2011||REMI||Maintenance fee reminder mailed|
|Jul 27, 2011||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8
|Jul 27, 2011||SULP||Surcharge for late payment|
Year of fee payment: 7