A countywide plea has been issued in the hope that it could help prevent future tragedies in the wake of a suspected double suicide this week.
It comes after two teenagers – Charleigh Disbrey, 15, and Mert Karaoglan, 18 – were hit by a train near Borehamwood on Monday evening.
Councillor Chris Hayward, who oversees education at County Hall, said: “This is such a tragic case and our thoughts are with their families and friends.
“Past experience shows that reading about or being affected by suicide can trigger depression and suicidal thoughts. If parents, friends or teachers are concerned about anyone they know they should seek help promptly from their family doctor or helplines.
“Some of the signs to look out for include withdrawal from friends and family, changes in eating and sleeping habits and feelings of worthlessness and guilt.”
Lorna Fraser from the Samaritans help and support charity said: “Our advice would be to not bottle things up and talk to somebody about what is going on.
“Often the hardest step is that first conversation but very often talking to someone can really make a difference.”
Confidential, free support is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year from the Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90 or visit www.samaritans.org