Date of Award

January 2021

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


School of Public Health

First Advisor

Marney White


Objectives: This project assesses deaths by jumping at a prominent parking garage in New Haven, CT in order to improve upon structural suicide prevention efforts.Methods: Individuals and organizations potentially involved with the garage were identified and contacted for information regarding any previous suicide prevention efforts, reasons for lack of prior interventions, and any existing or future plans for structural interventions. Physical evaluation of the garage was assessed for accessibility to the rooftop level and features that potentially contribute to the location as a jumping site. Data on suicide deaths was gathered from news reports and the CT Chief Medical Examiner in order to gauge the severity of deaths by jumping at the garage. The number of deaths were compared to other parking garages and tall structures in New Haven. Findings: There were four deaths by jumping at the parking garage from 2017 to 2020. Local stakeholders convened in the past to discuss the deaths by jumping at the garage and identified plans for short- and long-term interventions. Current suicide prevention measures at the garage include posters with the national suicide hotline number, regular patrolling by security officers, and 24/7 camera monitoring. Assessment of the garage shows features that may contribute to the consideration of the location as a potential jumping site, such as a climbable concrete barrier, and heavy traffic by the garage that may increase perception of lethality. Discussion and recommendations: The findings suggest that funding and lack of evidence on effectiveness of structural interventions among parking garages have made it difficult to implement structural interventions. Recommendations include forming a task force to oversee suicide prevention at the garage, updating signage, use of ground deterrents, installing physical barriers when possible, and changes in public policy for future construction projects.


This is an Open Access Thesis.

Open Access

This Article is Open Access