Potentially Reducing the Number of Suicides by Securing the Access to the Bridges
Suicides are preventable deaths, and diverse studies were done in attempts to lower suicide rates. A debatable concern is whether or not reducing the accessibility to the means required in committing suicides would reduce the number of suicides. According to a study done in Switzerland over a period of 13 years by Reisch, Schuster, and Konrad (2007), suicides by jumping from elevation is accountable for more than 10% of all suicides in Switzerland. They tried to understand the possible effect of bridge security on suicide rates.
Swiss Federal Statistical Office (BFS) provided data about all registered suicide deaths from 1990 until 2003. To narrow their statistic, information from local authorities were also obtained. Bringing together the information from the two sources led to the conclusion that in the period of time given, 17,482 people committed suicide; 1,830 of them were suicides by jumping from altitudes. The criterion for classifying jumping suicides was based on whether the jump was from a bridge or a building. While mass of the population was similar in all regions leading to a comparable number of high buildings, the accessibility to bridges varied from region to region. This was one of the considered factors when data was analyzed. Initial data revealed 475 suicides done by jumping from 141 bridges but due to discrepancy between the BFS and local authorities’ material, some of the data had to be dismissed. Also, the data for sixty-two individuals was rearranged because they committed suicide in a district different than where they lived.
After analyzing their data, the researchers concluded that from the 1,830 suicides by jumping, 429 were from bridges and 1,401 from other sites. By comparing the regions with bridges versus the ones without bridges, the researchers recognized that the suicide rate by leaping was higher in areas with bridges, yet the...