SAN FRANCISCO—A suicide prevention project is nearing completion at San Francisco’s famous Golden Gate Bridge. 

A 20-foot-wide net will be placed on each side of the bridge and will sit 20 feet below the bridge span. The net is made of four-millimeter stainless steel ropes, with the mesh only wide enough to allow fingers or a small hand to reach through. 

Due to the net’s hard surface and the possible injury that could result if a person jumps off the bridge and lands on it, authorities plan to establish rescue training programs for first responders, law enforcement and bridge ironworkers. The distance from the bridge to the steel net is 20 feet. 

The suicide net initiative was a result of years of advocacy from families who loss loved ones that died after jumping off the bridge. The project commenced in 2018 after a few delays.  

According to the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District, the project is set to be completed by November 2023. The project originally went to bid for $76 million and is now estimated at $215 million by completion. 

An average of 30 people or more die by suicide at the Golden Gate Bridge every year. Hundreds have been prevented by citizen intervention and CHP. 

A few other strategies were in place to help prevent suicides occurring on the bridge. Volunteer organizations have been known to patrol the bridge and phones that dialed out directly to suicide prevention hotlines were placed along the bridge.

Anyone with loved ones who suffer from suicidal ideation can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) provides 24/7, free, confidential support for people in distress and best practices for professionals and resources to aid in prevention and crisis situations. Help is also available through the Crisis Text Line — just text “HOME” to 741741.