Heroic security dog handler saves woman’s life on Humber Bridge this morning

Heroic security dog handler saves woman’s life on Humber Bridge this morning

Local security dog handler Richard Short is being hailed as a hero after he stopped a woman from jumping off the Humber Bridge in the early hours of this morning.

At around 12:45am, security company owner Richard was driving across the Humber Bridge from north to south when he noticed a car with no lights on in the side lane.

Richard said: “As I slowed down I thought the car was maybe broken down, and as I looked to the left, the woman was making a run to jump over the barrier.”

He exited his vehicle immediately and ran after the woman, who had managed to get herself over the railings, shouting: “Don’t do it, don’t do it. Whatever’s going on at the minute, we can sort it out.”

“She wouldn’t talk to me, though – I would describe her as absent. I was asking her if there is anything I can do, telling her I’m not the police and that I’m here to help her.

“She said yes, that there was something I could do, and she was trying to pass her phone and keys over the barrier to me.

I took the opportunity and I grabbed her and lifted her up, back over to the safe side and smothered her with my body until help arrived. I told her she was detained under common law. I was a police officer for 13 years so I’m used to things like that.”

Staff from the Humber Bridge Board arrived within a minute to help, and police and emergency vehicles arrived within the next half an hour.

“It was a fast paced, fluid incident and the Humber Bridge staff were really good. It seemed like an eternity that I was holding her down but they got to me eventually.

“Once we talked to her, we took the fight out of her and we told her she’s got the rest of her life to live. She admitted she needs help. I told her we will get her the help she needs. Once we got in the ambulance, they asked who got hold of her first, and she told them that if I hadn’t got hold of her, she would be gone.

“It’s the right thing to do. There were a lot of people nowadays who would film it and put it on Facebook and watch someone die. We’ve got a civic duty to help, even if it’s just telling them your name.

“Everyone is just saying well done, great work, and praising it, but it’s just one of those things we do. She didn’t have to die yesterday and hopefully she’ll live on and recover.”

When asked about how the incident has affected him, Richard said: “That is the closest for quite a few years that somebody has actually got to taking their own life in front of me. It did upset me, it’s only a natural reaction. You’re only human. I did the right thing in the worst situation possible.

“I know there are policies where you’re not meant to grab the person, you just try to talk them down, and if they go they go, but that goes against my moral compass and I knew I had to grab her.”

The 19-year-old woman has been taken to a mental health facility for treatment.

Contact Gi Grimsby
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