|System for detecting suicide attempts will be set up at Han River bridges (Yonhap)|
The Seoul Metropolitan Government said Thursday it will set up a system for detecting suicide attempts on Seoul‘s major bridges over the Han River, one of the most used places for people wanting to take their own lives, and swiftly rescuing them as part of efforts to curb the nation’s suicide rate, the highest in the world.
Under the envisioned plan, intelligence closed-circuit TVs detect movements suspicious of suicide attempts via its sensing function, which prompts officials to set up an emergency system where counselors and the lifesaving service are dispatched to the scene in three minutes, according to the city.
“We will test-run the system on the Mapo and Sogang Bridges until March, and then decide whether or not to expand it to all 25 Han River bridges,” said a city official in charge of the new system, citing the most favored bridges among suicide victims, which connect the financial district of Yeouido to Mapo.
A total of 196 people jumped off one of the river‘s 25 bridges in Seoul in suicide attempts in 2012, more than double from 57 in 2003. The Mapo Bridge ranked first, with 87 percent jumping from the bridge last year, followed by the Hangang and Sogang Bridges, according to the data compiled by the city.
The city also decided to launch an additional rescue team on the Han River in a move to better respond to suicide incidents.
Currently, two such lifesaving services are in operation.
“We’ve tried to come up with diverse measures to turn the bridge into places for hope. Now, we are also planning to create an association system with local mental health centers to help potential suicide victims,” the official said.
In September, the Seoul city established a system to place signs along the railing on the Mapo Bridge with touching messages such as: “Have you eaten yet?” and “The best part of your life is yet to come.”
It also set up a statue in the middle of the bridge, where a man pats another man on his back and pinches his cheek to lift his spirits.
South Korea is notorious for having the highest suicide rate among the countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), with an average of 33.5 people per 100,000 taking their lives in 2010, which is far higher than the 23.3 in Hungary and 21.2 in Japan, which came in second and third, according to government data. (Yonhap)
<관련 한글 기사>한강다리 투신자살 막는다
서울시는 투신 자살이 많은 서울시내 한강다리들에 투신자를 감시하고 투신했을 때 빨리 구조하는 시스템을 마련할 것이라고 목요일날 밝혔다. 서울 시청에 따르면 서울의 주요 다리에서 자살을 탐지하는 시스템을 구축할 것이라고 밝혔다.
이 시스템은 CCTV등을 이용해 다리에서 투신을 상시 모니터링하고 상황이 발생하면 전문상담원과 수난구조대를 3분안에 긴급 투입하는 체계이다.
한강에서의 투신자살을 예방하기 위해 마포•서강대교에 우선 ‘감시•구조 시스템’을 설치해 오는 3월까지 시범 운영할 계획이다.
한강 다리 투신사고는 지난해 196건으로 2003년 57건에 비해 두 배 이상 증가했다. (코리아헤럴드)