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Safety Harness Tether

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Simple Straight Tether
Single Straight Tether

Photo © Tom Lochhaas

A safety tether is a strong strap that connects between the sailor’s safety harness and a strong point on deck, such as a leg of the compass binnacle, a U-bolt installed in the cockpit expressly for the tether, a stanchion base, or a jackline.

The safety harness is worn around the chest and shoulders and has two D rings to which the tether connects. Most sailors now use inflatable PFDs with a built-in safety harness like that shown here.

A standard tether, as shown in this photo, is 6 feet long and has a shackle at each end. Typically the breaking strength of a commercial tether is over 5000 lbs. Different kinds of shackles are used, as described in the next pages.

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