Passer-by Pushes Would-Be Suicide Off Bridge
Five-hour standoff, traffic jam annoyed pusher
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 23, 2009 9:00 AM CDT
Haizhu Bridge in Guangzhou is shown.   (Wikimedia Commons)
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(Newser) – China’s Haizhu Bridge has attracted 12 would-be jumpers since April—none jumped, but all caused traffic jams. The latest, Chen Fuchao, was the final straw for Lai Jiansheng: After traffic was stopped for 5 hours by police, Lai broke through a barrier, shook Chen’s hand, and pushed him off the bridge himself—then saluted the crowd. Chen, who landed on an emergency air cushion, is recovering, the BBC reports.

Retired soldier Lai, 66, was fed up with Chen’s “selfish activity,” he said. Would-be jumpers “violate a lot of public interests. They do not really dare to kill themselves. Instead, they just want to raise the relevant government authorities’ attention to their appeals.” Chen, who suffered spine and elbow injuries, was reportedly despondent over $293,000 in debts. Lai was taken away by the police, according to local reports.