I’ve posted about my morbid fascination before, but today the Chron wrote about the demographics of a jumper. (Well actually, it’s just a press release from The Bridge Rail Foundation dressed up as news, but it’s fascinating none the less.)
The report, examines 15 years of jumpers, and answers some of my long standing questions about jumpers.
- How many people travel from outside the Bay Area simply to jump?
- 83% are from the bay area, with just under half (49%) coming from Marin, Napa, San Francisco, and Sonoma counties. 6% come from outside of California, and only 3 (less than 1%) came from outside the US.
Follow Up Question: How does the 6% outside of the state compare with other popular suicide sites? Is the bridge truly a “suicide magnet?”
- What does the typical jumper look like?
- White (80%), Male (74%), Never Married (56%), 40 year old student.
In case you’re wondering: I’m against the rail and the nets. I think it will just move them behind closed doors and away from the tourists. Plus, there’s something romantic, and yet simultaneously incredibly selfish, about doing it in public.
It may be one of the tidiest ways you could pick to kill yourself… As long as you don't accidentally tag a passing sail boat, you're not going to screw up traffic, make a god awful splatter, or make some poor paramedic tidy up your unlovely bleeding remains out of a bathtub. So in that sense, it's maybe less selfish, rather than more.