Permanent steps taken to keep Mississauga daredevils from jumping off bridge
Metrolinx is stepping up efforts to stop people from using the GO Train bridge in Port Credit as a diving platform into the Credit River.
The government transit agency says it will start installing a high security fence around the property line in and around the bridge in the expectation that it will limit trespassing in the future.
A recent public relations campaign involving Peel Regional Police aimed to keep divers off the bridge is not working as effectively as hoped as security teams say mostly young people continue to use the bridge for thrill seeking, especially when the weather heats up.
The bridge has been used for decades by young daredevils to jump into the river.
It has also been used as a spot where some have committed suicide.
Sue Milos, Metrolinx's Transit Safety operations assistant manager, said the time has come for increased security as people continue to ignore the dangers of oncoming trains and dive into the river which is too shallow. As well, Metrolinx points out the dangers divers pose to themselves and boaters traveling under the bridge.
Over the long weekend in May, Milos said 160 people were removed or prevented from accessing the bridge by security teams.
"Safety is central to everything we do at Metrolinx, and we have been working very hard to deter these dangerous activities," she said.
The new fencing will replace existing barriers and will consist of eight-foot-tall anti-climbing material that is also designed to be difficult to cut or damage.
Other methods used to keep people off the bridge include a number of warning signs, increased patrols and messages sent to nearby schools.
As well, GO trains are slowed down at various times when going through the Port Credit area.
"It is important for anybody who thinks about entering any rail corridor to remember that train traffic can be diverted onto any track, at any time, without notice and trains are surprisingly quiet when approaching at high speeds," Milos warns.
While the focus is on educating people about the dangers and deterrence, Milos said Metrolinx Transit Safety officers will also not hesitate to charge people with trespassing. The maximum fine for this offense is $5,000.
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