Saturday, June 2, 2007
The Golden Gate Bridge
I drive over the Golden Gate Bridge almost everyday. The scenery is so beautiful it's hard to keep your eyes on the road. When driving over the bridge you are either behind a site seer going 5 MPH, or a frightened person who is so scared to go over the bridge they just stop or an Asian driver and, well, I don’t need to explain that one. The bridge seems to have it's own weather, as if it were it's own city. Some days the bridge is covered with fog and you cannot even see it, others it very clear, sometimes it’s so windy you can feel the bridge swaying. It’s always a different weather pattern on the bridge. It' always a different story but I have to say it's one of the most amazing man made structures I have ever seen.
The Golden Gate Bridge turned 70 years old this past Monday. The Golden Gate Bridge was open to pedestrians and to automobiles on May 28th 1937. The original toll for the bridge one way was only 50 cents and $1 roundtrip. Today it cost $5.00 to cross the bride. The construction began on the bridge on January 5th 1933; it took a little over 4 years to complete. While it was being constructed a net was devised to help cut down on the causalities of the construction workers building the bridge, eleven workers died and 19 were saved due to the net suspended under the shell of the bridge.
When crossing the bridge it doesn’t really look like that far of a jump but it would be a 220-foot jump from the bridge into the water. 99% of the people that do jump off the bridge die instantly due to the impact or drown from the strong current. It’s said that jumpers are going 75 miles per hour when they hit the water. There are only 26 known people that have jumped off the bridge and survived but all had or still have major injuries. See the crisis sign that is on the bridge below that is there to help those thinking of jumping.
The Golden Gate Bridge is he most popular man mad structure in the United States where people go to commit suicide. In 2006 there were 34 confirmed suicides that jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge, those are only the confirmed jumpers, it’s estimated that many more jumped but where never found. It is estimated that a person jumps off the Golden Gate Bridge every 15 days. Amazing to think that it happens that often. Paul and I walked the bridge this past weekend and it is quite amazing. It’s a beautiful bridge to walk over and the scenery is breathtaking. I looked over the side of the bridge and it’s really hard to imagine jumping off the bridge, it really seems like you would just land in the water and be able to swim away.
If you are ever thinking of coming to San Francisco you have to come see the Golden Gate Bridge, really take a look at the construction of it, the view and all the beauty around it, THEN you can decide whether or not it's worth jumping off of it or not.