Fencing on Colorado Street Bridge Helps Prevent Suicide Jump

Published : Friday, November 9, 2018 | 5:05 AM

Pasadena City Manager Steve Mermell ordered 10-foot-high suicide prevention fencing to be installed along the Colorado Street Bridge pedestrian walkway in September of this year.

Fencing on the Colorado Street Bridge prevented the suicide of a 21-year-old Long Beach man who was apparently looking for a way to scale the 10-foot-tall barrier to jump when police intervened Thursday morning.

Officers found a suicide note in the man’s possession when they frisked him, Pasadena police Lt. Jason Clawson said.

Clawson said police received the report of a man on the west side of the bridge behaving suspiciously about 9:32 a.m.

“It appeared that he was looking up and trying to see how he could climb the fence,” Clawson said. “He had no shoes on. A passerby called us to check on his safety. When the officers arrived, it appeared that he was trying to defeat the fence but couldn’t.”

Clawson said they found out later the man had been detained for mental health issues at least a dozen other times over the past year. Officers took him to a local area hospital for further treatment.

“It appeared that the fencing that was in place defeated another tragedy,” Clawson said.

The City decided to install the temporary suicide-prevention fencing along the bridge’s alcoves last year.

Then in September, Pasadena City Manager Steve Mermell, responding to a spate of jumps and attempts and a 13-hour marathon talk down of one would-be jumper, ordered the installation of 10-foot high fencing along the bridge walkway from end to end.

More than 150 suicides have occurred from the Colorado Street Bridge since it was put up in 1919. Twenty-eight of these occurred in the past decade.

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