Police launch 'suicide patrols' at railway line in Ivybridge, near Plymouth
POLICE are to carry out 'suicide patrols' on a stretch of railway line at Ivybridge.
The suicide hotspot is being targeted as part of a national police operation aimed at stopping people killing themselves on railway lines.
Senior officers revealed there is an annual increase in suicide attempts in the autumn.
Two of the 64 suicide hotspots identified nationwide are in Devon, the other being a level crossing at Stoke Canon on the outskirts of Exeter.
Police are to send out patrols, including officers in plain clothes to the sites. The unprecedented move aims to save lives and reduce delays and disruption to passengers. Backed by CCTV operators, police will work with volunteers and railway officials to try to intercept vulnerable people.
It takes the authorities an average of 76 minutes to clear a railway line after a death.
Around 240 people commit suicide on the nation's railway lines every year, almost one in every 20 who kill themselves.
At one stage Network Rail estimated suicides were costing it £15million a year in compensation for delays.