How safe is it to use a chest harness without a sit harness? I ask this question because of an experience I had while on holiday.
A couple of years ago I was in China and hiked/climbed HuaShan (see this link for some info/pictures). This is basically a hike but with some very steep sections protected by chains. The most dangerous (but optional) sections are cordoned off and, to access them, you are provided with what seemed like a chest harness by staff - I found a photo of one here. Would a harness of this kind be effective in the event of a slip/fall? I'm not sure; naively I'd have thought that a fall could leave you in an awkward position from which self-rescue would be impossible, or you could even slip out of the harness??
EDIT: thanks for the responses. Some more info about the specific situation at Hua Shan...
Until a few years ago there was no safety equipment whatsoever, despite the fact that this is an extremely busy route with access seemingly regulated by the authorities. I guess that China is not well known for its high standards of health and safety.
The harness photo doesn't tell the whole story; there are also some very steep (almost vertical) sections - the first link contains some photos which hint at these sections.
It's not 'real' climbing - it is, however, a spectacular example of a situation where the use of wooden planks and pieces of iron has allowed access to terrain which would otherwise be considered a very highly graded and exposed rock climb.
Some people would probably be happy to follow this route without any protection. However, I think that many people would prefer to have some level of protection on the route. I'm just concerned that the protection provided may offer only a false sense of security.