Using the EATAL with the RideSafer

What the Energy Absorbing Tether Anchor Loop (aka EATAL) is and how to use it

This video showing EATA Loop installation in a passenger car was intended for demonstration purposes only since we did not have access to a bus or RV at the time.

The Energy Absorbing Tether Anchor Loop (EATAL) is intended to create an anchor point for the RideSafer Travel Vest Tether Strap in situations where one is not provided by the vehicle manufacturer. It is currently only authorized by the manufacturer for use in Federal Highway Authority (FHWA) class 4 vehicles (school busses), class 5 vehicles (2 axles-6 wheel (dual tires)) and larger vehicles.

Some consumers, facing unusual circumstances, have chosen to use the EATA Loop in other smaller vehicles. While doing so may not be inherently dangerous or create an unsafe situation, it would be considered an un-intended and non-recommended use by the RideSafer manufacturer and is not encouraged. Adding something to the vehicle that has not been tested may impact other safety systems like the airbag system or negatively impact the performance of the original equipment.

Go here to buy an EATAL or here to learn more about the RideSafer.

13 Comments
  • Jonathan Lambeth
    Posted at 16:01h, 04 June Reply

    Is the energy absorbent tether anchor loop pictured for sale on this page, the same as the one demonstrated in the video on this page? In some ways they do not appear to be the same product.

    Also, how long is the EATAL?

    • Amie
      Posted at 19:58h, 04 June Reply

      Yes. It’s the same thing. It’s about 9-10″, enough to wrap around something and loop through itself.

  • Jonathan Lambeth
    Posted at 13:26h, 05 June Reply

    Thank you! I will look forward to purchasing some for our pre-school mini-bus that has seats more like mini-vans than like bench-type bus seats.

  • Christy Muir
    Posted at 14:26h, 18 September Reply

    Can the EATAL be used for typical (5point harness) seats in vehicles that don’t have enough tether anchors?
    (My van only has 1 anchor in the 3rd row but I need 3).

    • Amie
      Posted at 15:02h, 18 September Reply

      The EATA Loop has not been crash tested for use with other child restraints so the official manufacturer answer would be no.

  • Kristi Fillmore
    Posted at 15:51h, 11 August Reply

    Has anyone successfully used the EATA loop in an RV dinette seat that doesn’t have tether hooks?

    • Amie
      Posted at 16:02h, 11 August Reply

      We’ve talked to a lot of people this summer about how to properly set up RideSafer in an RV. While there have been a few returns for it just not working, most have not returned. But no one has sent in pictures of their set up so we can say as a matter of fact what was successful. It really depends on the RV and how the dinette is set up ie. is there a back to it or just a cushion and what is there to connect an EATA Loop to.

  • Tina Di
    Posted at 19:52h, 25 August Reply

    Hi, we are looking for the Ridesafer set up for our class C motor home. We only have lap belts on the benches/seats/sofa, I am wondering will it matter what position do they ride on? Will it provide the same safety future for kids different facing setting ? such as long sofa side ride or rear ride bench as well was back facing couch seat? Again All of them has a lap belt only. TIA

    • Amie
      Posted at 09:40h, 26 August Reply

      Hi Tina, Like other harness child restraints, the RideSafer can be used with a lap-only belt and a tether anchor in a forward facing vehicle seat. The tether is required when using the RideSafer with a lap-only belt to provide the upper body restraint.

  • Karen Terry
    Posted at 08:27h, 15 December Reply

    How high does the back of the seat need to be in order for the tether to be effective?

    • Amie
      Posted at 12:30h, 15 December Reply

      Ideally the child would have head support at least to ear height. If there is a head rest and you are asking about the height of the seat only, it should be at least to the child’s shoulders. If you are asking in regard to an RV, we would emphasis that the back of the seat should be something structural and not just a cushion.

  • Brittny Estrada
    Posted at 09:34h, 09 March Reply

    I’m intrigued by this! But a little confused because I thought the anchor had to be in the very middle of the seat/harness, so would this not pull the harness to the side in a crash? I’m sure it was rigorously tested, I just wondered how that would work? Thanks!

    • Amie
      Posted at 20:47h, 11 March Reply

      While tether anchors usually are centered in the seating position, not all are. When used correctly it can be connected to a tether anchor that is off-center such as when the EATA Loop is wrapped around a school bus seat leg.

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