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Patrols around the bridge have been increased, says Frances Gertsch. (Julia Cook/CBC)

Officials at P.E.I. National Park have started handing out fines to people jumping off the bridge at Covehead Harbour.

For years the bridge jump has been a pastime for thrill-seeking youths, but recently the activity has been getting out of hand.

"They seem to want to jump when the boats are coming in," Richard Watts of Richard's Deep Sea Fishing told CBC News.

"They seem to play chicken and see how close they can come to the back of the boat while the boat's passing under the bridge, and it's getting too close for comfort."

Frances Gertsch, manager of visitor experience for the national park, said patrols have been increased in the area.

"We've changed the signage but the signage has been there for a long time," said Gertsch.

"We've made the signage a lot clearer and wanted to make sure people were clear on the hazard that exists when jumping off the Covehead Bridge."

Six people have been fined for jumping. Fines can range between $120 and $5,000.

Watts said he'd like to see more people charged and higher fines. Gertsch said if people don't stop jumping off Covehead Bridge, it's only a matter of time before someone gets hurt.