Changes are coming to the George Washington Bridge.
Concerns over suicide rates and incidents of bridge jumping have prompted the installation of protective fencing along the massive bridge.
While the massive suspension bridge that connects New York City and New Jersey does have dozens of signs about suicide prevention on display, authorities worried it wasn’t enough. According to the Port Authority, eight people jumped off the bridge to their deaths in 2016. So far in 2017, there have been 12 suicides and 45 attempts off the George Washington Bridge.
Now, new barriers are being installed to make it much more difficult for people to jump, hopefully saving lives. A 7-foot fence will extend the existing 4-foot barrier to 11 feet tall, with netting at the very top. Construction began on the south side of the bridge this week, and is expected to be completed by year’s end. Once the south side is complete, work will commence on the north side.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, and best practices for professionals: 1-800-273-8255.