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jumper prevention
call to action

2018 was the busiest jump year we have ever seen.
the FDOT is culpable and willing to do nothing.

correction: they are spending $15,000,000 on skyway disco lights.
it's time for the people to correct the government bridge troll fail.

updated: 05.30.19
   we have been pushing for someone in government to do the right thing about jumper prevention. the E.S.R. device has been ignored for years now. they offer 'crisis hotline phones', but they more often go unused. the bridge is loaded with video cameras, but they only record jumper activities. the trooper presence has been stepped up, but those gallant efforts are often too late to intervene.
   the lackluster media usually can't care less, as their jumper reporting is far from comprehensive. it's imperative they report on this pressing issue, as it's one that effects this area to such a negative degree.
   the time has come for the people to do what their government refuses to do. a barrier that hinges or can be removed for bridge inspections, can be designed and erected. the will to do so may take many more jumpers to implement.
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if not the E.S.R., perhaps a fence, forced by civilian action.
attention family members of jumpers' past and others concerned:

organize, create social media 'call to action' pages and post about them here.

consider making jumper prevention a reality:
gofundme  •  kickstarter  •  change.org

start yelling at someone to do something about jumpers. contact:
gov DeSantis  •  florida senate  •  your legislator  •  fdot.gov

enlist the media: tampabay times  •  bradenton herald  •  herald tribune

how many more people will die, due to government inaction?
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people doing things...
05.20.19: change.org, sign the petition to build a suicide prevention barrier on the Skyway Bridge in Florida.

04.06.19: women leave positive message notes on the skyway for potential jumpers.

12.31.18: Save A Life Bridge Suicide Prevention Project

locally home grown jumper prevention.
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another idea
05.13.19, Allen S., According to Baynews 9, there are plans to put sensors on the shoulder of the bridge to aid in detecting anyone parked on the shoulder or any pedestrian seemingly poised to jump.  I would like to suggest a simple modification to that plan by installing certain equipment to improve security. There are already 6 call boxes, Â probably 3 on each side of the bridge , that are already linked to a crisis center where people are on standby to intervene in the event someone attempts to jump from the bridge. My suggestion would tie all these things together:
   Put additional call boxes up, say one every 1/2 mile on the parts of the bridge, where someone could really hurt themselves from jumping or kill themselves.
   Tie those new sensors together with the call center so when the sensors go off the call center could call the closest callbox to hopefully get them to answer and gain their attention, long enough to permit a trooper to arrive at the scene to interact personally with the individual.
   Change the sign around the call boxes. Replace Crisis Center sign with "Please pick up before you jump, Please". That way people have a better idea of what the boxes are for and could entice them to pick up the phone.
   But that's about it. I think if we tie all these things together we would have a better chance at saving these people's lives instead of just hoping they pick up a Call Center phone, since putting up a fence or net seems out of the picture at the moment.
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well, look at this...
05.30.19: FDOT re-examining barriers along Sunshine Skyway Bridge as push from the public grows.
05.30.19, abcactionnews.com, ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Nearly 3,000 people have signed a petition to get a barrier or fence installed on the Sunshine Skyway bridge to save lives.
Robert Irons, who lost his daughter in December, will never look at the Skyway bridge the same again.
“I watched my daughter lose her life there,” said Irons.
Irons went to the bridge on December 23 after getting a call from his daughter. He says he was just feet away from her when she jumped. He’s been in misery for months thinking about how he could have saved her.
“Thousands of ways but I can’t do this alone, it’s gonna take everybody,” he said. “I can’t do it alone, I can’t do it alone.”
He believes a barrier or fence would stop, or at the very least slow someone down and give rescuers the opportunity to save them.
The Florida Department of Transportation installed signs two months ago to encourage people to reach out for help. The messages read, “Yes this world is a better place with you in it,” and “You are alive for a reason — don’t give up.”
But Irons doesn’t think it’s enough.
“How many more lives have to go before that magic number comes?” he asked.
FDOT officials are now re-examining the idea of installing barriers and potentially a netting after previously determining those things could get in the way of inspecting and maintaining the bridge.
They say a physical barrier project is currently being studied and it in the development stage. They said in a statement:
“The Department is very concerned with the suicides occurring on the Sunshine Skyway Bridge. The Department has been monitoring the issue and is currently working on all options to successfully deter suicide attempts on the bridge while securing the necessary approval from the State Historic Preservation Office, which preserves the iconic design of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge.”
In the meantime more than 3,000 people have signed a petition to get barriers. Irons hopes this push becomes a movement.
“I need all the help I can get to save the next person from making this mistake,” he said.
If you, or someone you knows is having suicidal thoughts the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255. (more help)
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so much blah, blah, blah...
2018, articles

01.23.15, tampabay.com, funding, technology could prompt suicide barrier

02.13.07, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, the effect of a bridge safety fence

10.06.03, tampabay.com, skyway safeguards don't deter jumpers

12.25.00, tampabay.com, skyway suicide patrol beefed up

05.05.00, tampabay.com, DOT rules out nets or fences for skyway

09.03.99, a good idea that went nowhere: full article

08.09.66,


02.07.59: full article

"But all the suicides have occurred in the Hillsborough County corridor, and the Hillsborough state attorney's office is getting tired of traveling all the way through Pinellas county to investigate them." (if it keeps an official's ass planted in his/her office, instead of investigating someone's self-death, what better reason to erect a fence?~)
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more
google.com: suicide jump prevention fencebridge fence images

why not nets?

addressing the calls for jumper deterrent volunteers on the bridge.
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comments
12.24.18, Lexie R., Tampa, FL., Goodmorning. Firstly, Thank you for this site and all the work you have put into it. Secondly, I hate feeling helpless and I know many others feel that way on this site as well. I was thinking we could organize a protest? The Bridge gets shut down due to weather anyways. It would suck for commuters, but I feel it's the only way we can pull attention to this. (not a bad idea. while it definitely would draw attention to the plight, how many people would be willing to go to jail over it?)

12.21.18, Rachelle B., facebook, They should just put a help center at the entrance of that bridge. (that's really not a bad idea. some form of kiosk structure in the rest areas at each end of the bridge, with people there to help. if anything, just to talk to people willing to stop for help. now here is where the volunteers can put in their time.)

06.08.18, Courtney, I am putting together information to reach out to my elected officials regarding the number of suicides on the skyway. Is there a coalition of people already working on this? I did not want to duplicate work that is already being done. I saw what you had posted but wasn't sure how much was done with contacting elected officials, calling it out etc. I have the "official" numbers from highway patrol through 2017. Thanks! (thanks for your contact and concern about the bridge jumpers. at this point, this 'call to action' page has garnered little interest at all. people whine and complain about jumpers and suicide, but get over it by the next day. days and weeks go by and it's pure silence. then someone jumps and boom, whining and complaining that nothing is getting done for a day or two. we really have no idea what more we can do. nothing would please us more, than this website going away, because there are no more jumpers. it's up to the powers that be to do something. we'd be curious to see the highway patrol numbers of which you speak.)

06.26.17, Tamara M., IONTBfb, I spoke to FDOT in 2012 after losing a family member this way. The state of Florida will not allow funding for any type of system to detour jumpers (sorry for your loss, but it appears that sadly, you are correct.)

12.03.16, Jennifer, Brandon, I just want to ask the owner of this bridge if he has ever considered hotwire? I mean it really could be a detour from people jumping off. Its sad that this happens and that other incidents happen, but every life is valuable and I think its definitely worth a try!! Just a idea that may help save <3
12.04.16, can you explain what 'hotwire' is?
12.04.16, Sorry...maybe I need to be more explicit:)
Hotwire...like prisons even use Hotwire, I have some that I am going to put around my chicken coup to keep predators out. Instead of getting Hotwire that is ran by electric you can do solar so there is no electric bill. If it can keep a 1,300 lbs horse is a stall it can for sure make someone think twice just at a touch. And solar would be the way to go!
Hotwire is used to keep things out and keep things in. I hope my idea is considered for the future.
12.05.16, so in this case, 'hotwire' is less a travel website that offers low prices on airfare, hotel, rental cars, and vacation packages, by selling off unsold travel inventory at discounted prices, but more an electric fence. that's exactly what we have been promoting for years.
12.05.16, This is great news to hear, thank you so much for corresponding with me about it. Its a BEAUTIFUL bridge...altho im scared to ride over it lol and never have, but I have taken the boat under it. I hope your plan becomes a reality, it will definetly turn things around :) Hope you have a good & safe holiday.
12.05.16, thank you for taking the time to offer your idea. people are tired of nothing being done. you have a good holiday as well and get those chickens in order.
12.05.16, Lol along with 4 horses....im on it ;)
One more idea phil:) I know you said you have been trying to get the plan in the works, I was just reading up on the details of the bridge and the maintenance and such, so I was thinking have you considered a Gofundme? If the community wants something done then im sure it would be a success to help fund the project. I don't know if theirs red tape you have to go thru to make it happen but its definitely a good idea! I think alot of people would donate for the cause:)
If I can rescue a horse from a kill pen in a different state thru a go fundme then theirs no doubt in mind that people would step up to contribute.
12.06.16, we will leave the fund raising to others. one might assume a jumper's family member would have spearheaded such a fund by now. it would more likely get done that way, as opposed to the idiots that run this horrible website. besides, there are too many people that hate what we do here. of course, we would promote the fund, front and center, if we were requested to do so.
12.06.16, anon, Awwwwwe, im sorry to hear that!! My lord its not your fault that things like that go on. Its just bitterness and easier to blame someone else sometimes then to accept peoples choices. Well, I have never lost someone in a suicide like that...but...I am all about helping and trying to make a positive change for people & animals:) We can't change the world it's true, but we can change the world for one person at a time. I would love to do a gofundme for the skyway, I would have to do lots of research for the post, and I would need a financial goal to post for the community. Have you got a round about estimate? Im interested in helping, I have the time and im up for the challenge:) sure it may take a little while but its got to start somewhere.
12.06.16, the 'fdot', florida department of transportation, is the agency needing the kick in the ass. not sure how that could be done, but they are the one's doing squat zero at the moment. they seem to have no real problem with people leaping to death from their bridge. sure, they installed cameras to record jumpers and crisis phones people tend to ignore. other than that, it's just a matter of troopers racing to the scene, hoping to intervene, and other agencies cleaning up afterwards. they did shut off access to their four tower cams. no need letting the public see what they allow to happen. the bottom line, there should be no fund raising necessary, for what the state should already be doing with the money they glean from the tolls they take. just install a fence, be it electrified or not, or wait dozens more jumpers before they end up installing one anyway. a kick in the ass is really all they need. one might think the affected families would gather strength and 'class action' that into being. after all, the state is displaying some culpability in having a structure, specifically known to draw jumpers, and allowing it to continue unabated, decade after decade.
12.06.16, anon, You are a 100% accurate, if it was my family member I would push for change, thats a real shame its like this and yet fingers point at you? Not right at all. Well, it was a thought but you are correct. I heard the cameras were off and I heard about the phones, I understand some people are mentally ill and do these things for depression or whatever. The sad part is the position you're in with it. People are going to do what they want to ya know, my Uncle took his life with a gun....doesn't mean im anti gun.
I hope it changes for you & all concerned. You can only do what you can, your one person! If theirs anything I can do in the future feel free to let me know :) Keep your head up...hopefully someone will get a wake-up call and change things to make it happen, somewhere & some how something has to give, every situation has a breaking point!
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06.10.17, (posted on facebook), we are getting zero input about the 'call to action' page. the page has been up for months. nothing. it's posted throughout these facebook jumper reports. nothing. (no wait, people are flagging it as 'spam'.) the problem is, people only talk about trying when there is a jumper and they only talk on social media. after a few days, the jump has been forgotten. then the next one happens, social media buzzes once again for a day and nothing more after day two. rinse, lather, repeat. it's really sad, but that's fact. there is a solution, but no one is forcing the issue. this website can only do so much.
more: write to the government trolls in charge of the bridge. until the people demand something be done, more nothing will be done. if thousands of people started writing them often enough, maybe they would do something. instead, we get 'thoughts and prayers' and we all know how well those work.~
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