Small Talk Saves Lives

Small Talk Saves Lives

At MECX we are doing all we can to prevent rail suicides and support any of those people who may be affected by them. Every suicide affects family, friends, commuters and indeed our employees.  That’s why at MECX we support the “Small Talk, Saves Lives” Campaign

According to the Network Rail safety campaign on suicide prevention, the number of suicides on the railway over the last two years has fallen by 18 per cent. In 2016/17, 237 people took their lives on the railway – the lowest number since 2010/11. Over the same period, railway employees, police officers and members of the public have intervened in over 2,500 suicide attempts on Britain’s railway.

For every life lost on the railway six are saved. Sadly, of those who do seek to take their lives on the railway one in five fail and suffer severe life-changing injuries.

Thankfully however, on the 21st March two of our MECX team (Luke Kelly & Dean Cox) were able to save a young lady who appeared to be in an emotional crisis at Aston Station near Aston Villa Football Ground.

Whilst both men were carrying out their nightly duties at around 00:15hrs on 21st March, a member of the public approached our team advising that a young girl was acting in a strange manner at Aston Station.  With not a minute to lose both Dean and Luke very carefully approached the emotionally distressed young lady on the platform and started to carefully talk to her.  From previous training both Luke & Dean were aware that asking simple questions such as “Hi I’m Dean, what’s your name?” can temporarily interrupt any suicidal thoughts that a person may be having at that time.  Indeed according to the Samaritans 69% of people recognise that a simple question can be enough to break the flow of any negative and despairing thoughts.  Over the next 15 minutes both Luke & Dean continued to listen to the unfortunate problems and worries that the young lady was grappling with; whilst behind the scenes they discretely contacted the police & subsequent ambulance service. They then wrapped the young lady in a warm blanket, whilst continuing to talk and listen until the ambulance crew arrived and she was in safe hands.

At MECX we love great deeds such as this and so both Luke & Dean have been nominated as Employee’s of the Month. Both Dean and Luke concurred that “a little conversation may go a long way to saving a life, and that this is a valuable & intrinsic part of our job.”

Deborah Lillis

About Deborah Lillis

RoSPA Member
MECX network rail contractor
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