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Tragic death of a teenager at Schoolies is being treated as a suicide, police confirm


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The tragic death of a teenager celebrating Schoolies on Queensland’s Gold Coast is being treated as a suicide, police have confirmed.

Hamish Bidgood, 18, plunged to his death from a 11-storey-high balcony at the Surfers Regent Apartments in Surfers Paradise on Thursday morning.

The teenager, who is from Turramurra on Sydney’s north shore, was with a group of mates who had been been ingesting nitrous oxide, known as laughing gas, soon before he fell, just after 5am.

But police confirmed on Friday his death was not considered suspicious. 

Hamish Bidgood (pictured), 18, plunged to his death from a 11-storey-high balcony at the Surfers Regent Apartments in Surfers Paradise on Thursday morning

The teenager, who is from Turramurra on Sydney's north shore, was with a group of mates who had been been ingesting nitrous oxide, known as laughing gas, soon before he fell, just after 5am

The teenager, who is from Turramurra on Sydney’s north shore, was with a group of mates who had been been ingesting nitrous oxide, known as laughing gas, soon before he fell, just after 5am

Hamish Bidgood, 18 was filmed partying with fellow Schoolies before he plunged to his death

Bidgood fell into the grassed pool area of the Surfers Regent Apartments. Pictured is a balcony from the building

Hamish Bidgood (pictured) fell into the grassed pool area of the Surfers Regent Apartments. Pictured (right) is a balcony from the building

‘There is a strong indication that it was a suicide and we’re treating it as one,’ a Queensland Police spokesman told Daily Mail Australia.

However the spokesman said police cannot confirm that the teenager took his own life until a full toxicology report has been completed. 

Friends and classmates of Hamish have posted tributes on social media.

‘Such a good talented kid to be taken away this early, my condolences to all those blessed to have known you. 

‘Rest In Peace Hamish mate god has bigger plans for you now,’ a friend posted on Facebook.

‘Rest easy Hambo, they’re lucky to have you up there,’ another friend said.

Bidgood's (pictured) friends have returned home following the tragedy on Thursday morning 

Bidgood’s (pictured) friends have returned home following the tragedy on Thursday morning 

'Such a good talented kid to be taken away this early, my condolences to all those blessed to have known you. 'Rest In Peace Hamish mate god has bigger plans for you now,' a friend posted on Facebook

‘Such a good talented kid to be taken away this early, my condolences to all those blessed to have known you. ‘Rest In Peace Hamish mate god has bigger plans for you now,’ a friend posted on Facebook

Bidgood reportedly fell into the grassed pool area (pictured) of the Surfers Regent Apartments

Bidgood reportedly fell into the grassed pool area (pictured) of the Surfers Regent Apartments

Earlier in the night, Bidgood had been filmed by his friends in a chilling Snapchat video captioned: ‘This is the beginning of the end for Hamish Bidgood’.

In the video, which has since been deleted from social media, Bidgood can be seen partying with his mates, the Daily Telegraph reported.

Hours later, he fell 11 storeys from the high-rise and died.

Distraught friends of the school leaver jumped the fence of the grassed pool area of the hotel he had fallen into.

Balcony safety during Schoolies

Dangerous behaviour on balconies can lead to eviction and even police arrests. The Queensland Government has issued some tips on balcony safety to keep young people safe during their Schoolies week.

  • Don’t sit on, lean over, climb or hang off the side of balconies. Accidents happen – you could slip and fall
  • Never ‘room hop’ from balcony to balcony. One wrong move could prove fatal
  • Avoid overcrowding. Take it inside or head down to the beach party
  • Don’t throw objects – Schoolies is a very busy time and there may be people walking below. Objects thrown or dropped from a height can become dangerous projectiles when they reach the ground

Source: QLD Government 

Two police officers attempted CPR before giving way to paramedics who unsuccessfully attempted to revive him. 

Bidgood’s friends, who were also from Turramurra High School in Sydney’s upper north shore, have ended their celebrations early and returned home.

‘I’m absolutely gutted,’ one of his friends said.

‘He was such a great kid.’

Counselling has being offered to fellow school leavers on the Gold Coast following the teen’s death.  

The tragedy occurred at  Surfers Regent Apartments (pictured) in the centre of the Gold Coast

The tragedy occurred at Surfers Regent Apartments (pictured) in the centre of the Gold Coast

Meanwhile, the 18-year-old’s devastated parents, Des and Lyn Bidgood, along with his brothers Daniel and Oliver, made their way to Surfers Paradise on Thursday afternoon.

There are claims he had inhaled nitrous oxide, otherwise known as laughing gas or nangs, before he fell, the Courier Mail reported.

More than a dozen canisters used for administering a 20-second high were found in the vicinity of the hotel. 

Red Frogs coordinator Andy Gourley declined to comment but confirmed the volunteer group was speaking with police.

Police will now prepare a report for the Coroner.

Bidgood was believed to be celebrating with a friend from Turramurra High School (pictured)

Bidgood was believed to be celebrating with a friend from Turramurra High School (pictured)

His death comes just days after police warned skylarking on high-rise balconies at Schoolies, known as ‘ledging’, was a ‘disaster waiting to happen’.

Videos shared across social media show teens teetering on the edges balconies while drinking from their shoes.

The hijinks prompted calls for high-rise balconies to be locked off during the end-of-school celebrations.

A 17-year-old girl also fell to hear death from a balcony during Schoolies in 2012.

In that instance, Isabelle Colman fell from the 26th floor of the Chevron Renaissance, only two kilometres from the Surfers Regent Apartments.

In the month before, three others had fallen to their deaths from Gold Coast skyscrapers.

 

If you need someone to talk to, contact Lifeline Australia 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636

• Suicide Call Back Service – 1300 659 467

• Kids Helpline – 1800 55 1800

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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