Effect of barriers on the Clifton suspension bridge, England, on local patterns of suicide: implications for prevention

Olive Bennewith , Mike Nowers , David Gunnell


We assessed the effect of the installation of barriers on the Clifton suspension bridge, Bristol, England, in 1998 on local suicides by jumping. Deaths from this bridge halved from 8.2 per year (1994–1998) to 4.0 per year (1999–2003; P=0.008). Although 90% of the suicides from the bridge were by males, there was no evidence of an increase in male suicide by jumping from other sites in the Bristol area after the erection of the barriers. This study provides evidence for the effectiveness of barriers on bridges in preventing site-specific suicides and suicides by jumping overall in the surrounding area.

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