Officers prevent suicide on Vista Bridge

Officers prevent suicide on Vista Bridge
A view from the Vista Bridge. (KATU photo)

PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland police officers prevented a suicide on the Vista Bridge Monday night.

Officers with the Enhanced Crisis Intervention Team responded to reports of a suicidal man who was climbing over the barrier on the bridge, according to Sgt. Pete Simpson. The officers spoke with the 36-year-old man and convinced him to climb back over the fence.

The man was taken to a hospital.

The Vista Bridge was built in the 1920s and has a long history of suicides. Two teenagers, including a 15-year-old girl, are among the five people who jumped from the bridge this year.

Portland City Commissioner Steve Novick declared an emergency after the third suicide and ordered for the immediate construction of a screen on the bridge. City officials said the screen is a temporary remedy.

The temporary screen costs $236,000. The city is seeking funding for a permanent barrier that’s expected to cost between $2.5 million and $3 million.

Available resources

If you or someone you know has suicidal thoughts or needs help, police say the following options are available:

  • The Multnomah County Crisis Line is available 24 hours a day at (503) 988-4888.
  • Lines for Life is available 24 hours a day at (503) 972-3456.
  • Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare has an urgent walk-in clinic open from 7:00 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., 7 days a week. Payment is not necessary. Call (503) 963-2575.