Crime - Sacto 911

Man who climbed over railing on Foresthill Bridge returns to safety

The Foresthill Bridge, pictured in July 2010, is the tallest bridge in California and spans 730 feet over the north fork of the American River near Auburn.
The Foresthill Bridge, pictured in July 2010, is the tallest bridge in California and spans 730 feet over the north fork of the American River near Auburn. Sacramento

The Foresthill Bridge near Auburn was closed for more than two hours Saturday afternoon as Placer County officials talked with a man who had climbed over the railing and was in danger of falling.

The Placer County Sheriff’s Department said the situation was resolved shortly before 4:30 p.m. as deputies on-site persuaded the man to step away from the bridge railing and climb over to safety. The bridge then reopened to traffic.

At 730 feet above the American River, the Foresthill Bridge is the fourth highest in the country and the highest span in California.

Dena Erwin, spokeswoman for the Placer County Sheriff’s Department, said an off-duty Placer County officer, who also happens to be a crisis negotiator, was crossing the bridge about 2 p.m. and saw a man climbing over the railing.

Erwin said the officer stopped and attempted to persuade the man to scramble back to safety. He declined to do so.

Erwin said the off-duty officer who spotted the man is “part of a team that tries to talk people down when they’re on the bridge.”

Mark Glover: 916-321-1184, @markhglover

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