UPDATE: Duncan bridge incident has police reminding those in distress to reach out for help

“Holidays can be a difficult time for many reasons.”

Traffic going across the Cowichan River Bridge on the Trans-Canada Highway after noon on Dec. 18 was down to one lane heading south after police closed the other lane.

RCMP Cpl. Tammy Douglas said the traffic delay was due to a police incident in which a person was in crisis on the black bridge near 100 Cowichan Way in Duncan.

“Swift water Cowichan SAR was also deployed as a fail safe just down stream,” she said.

Police spoke with the man, who was in emotional distress, for more than an hour, successfully negotiating him off the bridge. He was transported by police to Cowichan District Hospital for assessment.

BC Ambulance Service also staged nearby, and local construction crews working nearby offered tools and assistance.

Some walking trails were also closed while the situation was unfolding. The TCH was fully reopened to traffic by about 1:30 p.m.

North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP want to remind anyone who may themselves be feeling low, oir know someone who’s in distress, that the Vancouver Island Crisis Line and Duncan Mental Helath and Addictions Services are there to help. The Crisis Line is available 24 hours per day, seven days a week, and their number is 1-888-494-3888. Duncan Mental Health is located at 3088 Gibbins Rd. in Duncan and can be reached by phone at 250-709-3040.

“Holidays can be a difficult time for many reasons,” says North Cowichan Duncan RCMP detachment commander Chris Bear. “We encourage those who need it to seek out resources, speak with trusted family and friends, or call 911 in an emergency. Don’t hesitate to reach out to loved ones who you feel may struggle at this time of year as well.”

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