Commission To Boost Patrols On Bridges To Combat Suicide Attempt

Commission To Boost Patrols On Bridges To Combat Suicide Attempts

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NEW HOPE, Pa. -

The Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission says it plans to boost patrol along its bridges to further combat suicide attempts over the holidays.

The commission announced its plans on Saturday, saying the decision comes in the wake of an apparent suicide at the New Hope-Lambertville Toll Bridge, the second since Thanksgiving.

"As best as we can tell, the Commission has never experienced two apparent-suicide fatalities within such a short period of time and we certainly will attempt to do all we can to prevent any further such incidents," Acting Executive Director Arnold J. Conoline, Jr. said in a statement.

"While we train and outfit our personnel to deal with these kinds of situations, we're going to redouble our efforts during the holiday period when stress and depression can cause individuals to take drastic and unfortunate actions," the statement read.

The commission's plans include requests to both state and local police to boost their patrols, along with increased commission patrols.

The commission says it also plans to have variable-message signs on the two approaches to the New Hope-Lambertville Toll Bridge, increased security-camera monitoring on bridges most susceptible to a jumping incident, heightened alert for direct bridge officers and a post crisis intervention hotline, which has since been added to the commission's official website.

Conoline says the commission has also begun to discuss long-term options, such as permanent signs or barriers.

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