United States

SEPTA Aims for Safety With Platform Barriers

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SEPTA is seeking to renovate its City Hall Station with an eye on potentially saving lives.

General Manager Jeffrey Knueppel ordered automatic glass doors and platform barriers -- the first of its kind in the United States on a transit system -- to be installed for the Broad Street Line subway. The transit company hopes this will reduce the amount of accidental and intentional falls onto the track.

In previous efforts to stop suicide among riders, SEPTA has placed signs for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline on its subway and regional rail stations. However, the intentional suicides have not stopped and their new plan hopes to eliminate the issue all together.

The glass barrier design that they plan to implement is similar to the structure seen at airport train terminals.

For now, the platform barricade is only in the plans for the City Hall Station. "Final cost and renderings are not available yet, since engineers are still designing how they will make these fit within the tight spaces on the old platforms below," SEPTA’s Andrew Busch stated.

The project should be completed within the next three years, SEPTA said. In the meantime, it is crucial for fellow passengers to take action if someone looks distraught or abnormally close to the platform edge. Anything that can engage them may be the difference in someone’s life.

SUICIDE PREVENTION HELP: The National Suicide Prevention Hotline (1-800-273-8255) is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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