Thursday, August 2, 2007

Bridges, Class, and I remember what I was so crazy about

I wanted to post something about this bridge collapse in Minneapolis yesterday. It was certainly a tragedy and my thoughts are with the families of those that lost their life and those that are still missing. I thought it was a very classy move by the Twins organization to have a moment of silence and then cancel/postpone the next few games to allow rescue and road crews to do their thing without putting more traffic in the area (the Metrodome is about 8 blocks away from the scene.)

That leads me into what was driving me crazy earlier on and that was a discussion Jason and I had about if what happened up there happened down here in DC. Right now we have the Whitney Young Bridge in SE, DC closed for repair and even though it's not an Interstate highway it has caused considerable congestion. Several times in the past few years the police have shut down the Beltway (I495 for those of you out side of DC) when a man threatened to jump off the bridge to commit suicide. Traffic was snarled for hours making the rush hour home for some 3-4 times longer then normal.

I will not go into to my thoughts on suicide but I will only say that I find it humorous that we consider this a "crime" punishable by jail and fines.

I do want to point out that if someone were to want to jump off the bridge (or any other bridge over water for that matter) the police should change their tactics. Instead of negotiating for hours with the person in question, they should give him/her an hour to come down. During that time they pull several rescue boats into the area. If after an hour it doesn't work, push them, and let them take their chances with the water. The boats would have emergency medical personnel on board who could take care of the jumper if they survived. Either way it wouldn't be an major inconvenience to the rest of us.

Yeah, I'm going to a special place when I die...I'm aware of it.

No comments: