407: The Bridge
May 7, 2010
We bring you stories of bridges from three different countries, including one in China that's famous for its massive size and its high suicide rate. One takes it upon himself to patrol the bridge, looking for jumpers. You can read entries from the watchman's blog here. This and other stories where we stop before getting to the other side.
- There is a four mile long bridge in Naan-jing China, famous for how many people jump off to commit suicide. In 2003, a man named Chen Sah began spending all of his weekends on the bridge, trying to single handedly stop the jumpers. Reporter Mike Paterniti tells his story of meeting Mr. Chen. (15 minutes) A story Paterniti wrote about Mr. Chen appears in GQ Magazine.
- In the Middle East, hundreds and hundreds of tunnels connect the Gaza strip and Egypt, allowing supplies to bypass the Israeli blockade against Hamas-controlled Gaza. Producer Nancy Updike speaks with Ira about the tunnels, and plays tape from an interview she conducted with a tunnel owner. (15 minutes)Song: "Colonel Bogey (from Bridge Over the River Kwai)", L'Orchestra Cinematic
- Isaiah Thompson tells the story of the Julia Tuttle Causeway in Miami, a bridge that became home to a population of sex offenders, after a powerful lobbyist named Ron Book helped make it illegal for them live almost anywhere else in the city. Isaiah Thompson is a reporter and columnist for the Philadelphia City Paper. (20 minutes)