ISO 12401 standard has been designed for the needs of persons on board of recreational craft. Safety belts and safety lines made in accordance with this standard give the user the security that they remain connected to the boat, but they do not provide protection against falls.
Also, the standard is not applicable on sailtraps for sailing dinghies, windsurf harnesses or seat belts for fast motor boats. It is intended to guide manufacturers, buyers and users of these safety equipment as a guide to ensure that the equipment operates effectively during use.
Equally significant is that the user is encouraged by a comfortable and easy-to-carry design to carry the equipment during the entire period spent on board a boat and not to stow in an locker for emergencies. Comfort and freedom of movement are important factors in deciding on wearing seat belts. These are intended to prevent the wearer from falling into the water or to facilitate a return on the deck.
Whether the fall of a carrier into the water is really prevented depends on the attachment point and the length of the safety line. Since correctly positioned safety belts and safety lines prevent the vehicle from falling into the water under normal circumstances, the towing position after a fall is not taken into account. The importance of a good fit can not be emphasized enough.
If the belt has no automatic tensioning device, it is the responsibility of the wearer to ensure a good fit of the belt.
The International / European Standard (EN ISO 12401: 2009) has been prepared by ISO / TC 188 “Small craft” in cooperation with CEN / TC 162 “Protective clothing including hand and arm protection and lifejackets”. The responsible German standardization body is the work committee NA 112-04-04 AA “Water Rescue and Safety” in NASport.