Attempted Manhattan Bridge suicide closes span

Attempted Manhattan Bridge suicide closes span
Photo by Elizabeth Graham

A man threatening to jump off the Manhattan Bridge snarled car and train traffic between Brooklyn and Manhattan for an hour this morning.

Police responded to reports of a man near suicide on the Brooklyn-bound side of the bridge’s lower level at 7:25 am, officers said. Responders negotiated with the man, who is in his 30s, for about an hour, according to the Police Department. At around 8:25 am, cops managed to pull him back from the edge and transport him to Bellevue Hospital Center in Manhattan for observation, cops said.

Metropolitan Transportation Authority officials cut power to the bridge’s subway tracks while officers talked the man down, severing B and D service and forcing N and Q trains to be rerouted into the Montague tunnels under the East River, newly reopened after 13 months of repairs to Hurricane Sandy damage. The D was cut off between 34th Street in Manhattan and Atlantic Avenue–Barclays Center and the B was stopped between 34th Street and the Prospect Park station.

The move derailed commuters’ plans and caused widespread confusion, with one train-bound Twitter user repeating rumors of a terrorist attack and others bemoaning being late to work — and to Nintendo World. One straphanger summed up a common sentiment this way:

“Some jerk tried to kill himself on the Manhattan Bridge so all the train lines are super delayed,” wrote someone with the Twitter handle Suz_Go.

One Community News Group staffer said a conductor forced everyone off a Q train at Newkirk in Flatbush, directing passengers to catch a train back to Coney Island to transfer to the F, but when she exited, no trains were traveling in either direction. The mess forced her to take a $20 cab ride to this paper’s Downtown office.

Another Q train crawled at around two miles per hour between Church Avenue and Atlantic Avenue–Barclays Center from 8:30 to 8:55 am, then returned to its normal speed to DeKalb Avenue.

Reach reporter Noah Hurowitz at nhuro‌witz@‌cnglo‌cal.com or by calling (718) 260–4505. Follow him on Twitter @noahhurowitz