Cops save suicidal man in harbour

Police who were called to a drowning in Durban's harbour yesterday found themselves dealing with a man who had slashed his own throat and missed the main artery by "millimetres".

Police who were called to a drowning in Durban's harbour yesterday found themselves dealing with a man who had slashed his own throat and missed the main artery by "millimetres".

Inspector Troy Allison of the police's Search and Rescue Unit said the initial call received had been for "a drowning in progress".

When police arrived at the scene they found the man standing on one of the bollards to which ships are tied. He had apparently already cut himself twice.

Allison said police divers, a hostage negotiator and more personnel were placed on stand-by.

The negotiations lasted almost two hours.

The man was persuaded to seek attention at a waiting ambulance and was disarmed.

Netcare 911 spokesman Chris Botha: "I actually saw the main blood vessel pulsating. He was millimetres away [from death]."

The man was taken to Addington Hospital. - Sapa

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