Yesterday’s newspaper had an article about the possible suicide prevention strategies for a local bridge where police respond to potential jumpers on average of once a week. This reminded me of an episode from a radio show about people who jumped off bridges and the popular bridges they jump from. This then got me reading about it on the internet.
It’s quite the fascinating topic if you’re interested in that sort of thing. Jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco will statistically give you a 98% success rate of killing yourself. If you’ve done your homework though you should be able to up your chances to 99.9%. Apparently, hitting the water feet first at a certain angle will decrease your chances of dying. The small percentage that survive the impact will often die from hypothermia.
I can see how the bridge method for suicide is desirable. It’s fairly quick and as a bonus you get the thrill of a lifetime just before it’s all over. Suicide by firearm, car exhaust fumes or pills requires one to attain the proper tools. A bridge is accessible 24/7 for free.
One fellow who jumped off of the Golden Gate Bridge immediately regretted it while in free fall. He ended up surviving, garnered some publicity, wrote a best selling book about it and may have found his calling advocating for mental health and bridge suicide prevention. Again the mantra stays true…bigger the risk, bigger the reward.