Suicide rate on the rise in Penang

26 Jan 2016 / 17:53 H.

    NIBONG TEBAL: The number of cases of firefighters rescuing people attempting to commit suicide increased by 37% last year compared with 2014.
    Penang fire and rescue department director Azmi Tamat said they received a total of 37 cases of people attempting to commit suicide in 2015 compared with 27 the previous year.
    He added most of the cases were of people attempting to do so by jumping off Penang Bridge.
    "It is a new challenge for us now to monitor both bridges, Penang Bridge and Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge.
    "Normally we collaborate with the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) and marine police to handle the cases in order to ensure the person would not jump off the bridge.
    "We need to have some communication skills to convince the people, who feel they are in a dead end, by giving them a more positive angle and ensure they think wisely," he told reporters after officiating the department's assembly at its headquarters in Batu Kawan yesterday.
    He said recently the state firefighters took up to two hours to convince an individual not to jump off the bridge.
    Azmi also said two new fire and rescue stations would be set up in Penanti and Batu Kawan to ensure they could response to any case in the areas within eight minutes after receiving an emergency call.

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