Ithaca is FENCES

New York State Bridge Authority Report
A Comprehensive Plan for Suicide Prevention

New York State Bridge Authority (NYSBA) researched whether fences were the preferred response to deaths by suicide from bridges.  They determined that HUMAN INTERVENTION is the most effect way to reduce the number of suicides on bridges.

In 2007 the NYSBA consulted with the New York State Office of Mental Health, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and the former Director of Suicide Prevention for New York State.  After evaluating the effectiveness, reliability, maintenance of operation, maintenance on facility, impact on mission, aesthetics, incident response, sensitivity and cost the NYSBA wrote a report and comprehensive plan that recommends using call boxes on bridges NOT installing fences. 

The full plan calls for installing call boxes on bridges, conduct awareness and educational campaigns for the community and emergency call training for personnel.  The report emphasizes that

                     "Professionals in the field of mental health overwhelmingly agree that qualified intervention is the best way
                      to try to stop a potential suicide and to establish a process for long-term prevention of suicide."

                     "Maintaining a human connection with a suicidal individual IS the best way to ensure that person's survival."

Here is a link to a pdf of the New York State Bridge Authority Report:

http://www.nysba.state.ny.us/Documents/NYSBA%20Suicide%20Prevention%20Summary%20Report.pdf