Piscataqua River Bridge Closed Thursday due to a Person in Crisis
The Piscataqua River Bridge was closed for six hours Thursday as police dealt with a person experiencing a mental health crisis.
Maine Department of Public Safety spokesperson Shannon Moss says police were called to the I-95 bridge that stretches between Maine and New Hampshire at approximately 6:30 Thursday morning, for an incident involving a person on the northbound side. Traffic was closed down in both directions, while police dealt with the situation.
Officials say a New Hampshire resident was experiencing a mental health crisis and was jumping from the bridge to the jersey barriers. He then jumped onto the catwalk underneath the bridge, narrowly avoiding falling 100 feet into the water. Members of the Maine State Police Crisis Negotiation Team spoke with the man for more than two hours, struggling to be heard over the traffic noise, until they decided to shut down the bridge to traffic. Finally, at approximately 10:30 Thursday morning, the man surrendered to the police and was taken into protective custody. He was transported to a local hospital for evaluation.
Once the investigation is completed, the details will be given to the York County District Attorney's Office to determine whether any charges will be filed.
All lanes of travel have been reopened to traffic.
The Interstate 95 bridge stretches between Kittery and Portsmouth and is the main avenue of travel between Southern Maine and New Hampshire.
We'll update this story as more details become available.