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Old 11-09-2013, 05:18   #16
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Re: Tether Length

Originally Posted by Randy View Post
The numbers that I threw out there are taken (I believe accurately) from the ANSI Z359 code which addresses fall protection code. I've had a fair amount of training in fall protection but wouldn't call myself an expert in the field.
Originally Posted by Miniyot View Post
Years ago in construction, our "fall protection" was a piece of rope and a safety belt. There were alot of injuries from the safety belt when someone fell.

Now, we have to use a 5 point harness and a specially designed webbing that will absorb the shock load of a fall.

You might think I'm talking about a 20 foot are wrong, it's only six feet. Can you imagine falling, but your safety gear catches you at 6 feet but your back gets broken because you only had a belt and rope? It used to happen.

Will I take that chance because I am on a boat and not building a high rise? In one word NO. in two words....HE** NO.....
This isn't the 18th century where sailors were tuff old coots and didn't need no bloody safety sh!t......
When I get the boat I want and get of this stinking island, you can bet I will have a 5 point harness, and 2 web straps designed for fall protection. Each web will be attach to a jackline (one on each side of boat) so incase I do fall during a storm, I will not fall far and the jacklines will be spaced far enough apart so I can perform the duties i will need to do without being able to fall overboard.
Laugh if you want but its better to be safe than dead.
I am (have been trained to be) relentlessly data driven. The incident/injury/fatality data suggests that if you two want to take your knowledge of commercial fall protection systems and apply them to improve yachting harnesses/tethers/jacklines that you should focus on two areas:

#1 making the systems easy and convenient and comfortable enough that sailors actually use them. From a data perspective the number one problem is people not using the systems at all.

#2 and the clear priority is to make sure the system will retain the person on deck, rather than allow then to slide over the side. There is essentially a 100% safety record for sailors who stay on the deck in incidents where people died who went over the side.

As I said above, there is essentially zero incident of injuries or broken gear do to the 'fall' loading. Of course, there is no downside to using stronger gear that spreads the load better, but my point is that there also appears to be little incremental upside, whereas there is major upside to systems which people will more easily use and which keep the crew actually on deck.

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Old 11-09-2013, 05:46   #17
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Re: Tether Length

Originally Posted by Harry Black View Post
Can anyone suggest the best length for a tether?
No. There is no one "best" length. It is going to vary from boat to boat, and may well vary depending on just what you are doing.

That said, as estarzinger pointed out, your tether needs to be short enough to keep you on the boat. Dragging in the water off the side of the boat, or off the back, is where you do NOT want to be! People have died while being dragged along in the water, still attached to the boat by their too-long tether.

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Old 11-09-2013, 06:23   #18
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Re: Tether Length

I never liked the length of tether that came on my harness, its was too long the clip dragged on the deck and would on occasion hang up and below deck it was very noisey and would allow a long fall befor it would stop you so I ran the tether under the jackline and back to the harness this raised the jackline off the deck which made it self clearing when moving for and aft and prevented a slipping hazard from the flat webbing of the jackline This allowed you to double the lenght if needed One other thing it came with an eye splice on the harness end which was pointed out to me that there would be no way of realesing if the need be!

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