By October 2015, the EU wants all new passenger cars to be fitted with a 112 Ecall. So what exactly is an Ecall? Well, this device is a lifesaving satellite sensory unit; it will be automatically activated by dialling 112 when should your vehicle be involved in an accident. Basically, it dials on impact. The emergency services would then be able to rush to the scene immediately.
The 112 Ecall is the main European emergency number. Whether the driver and/or the passengers are unconscious or not, the system will be able to communicate with the emergency services direct. The 112 Ecall would also be accessible manually for troubled drivers, passengers and eye witnesses. The button will be visible in the car and can be pressed by hand via anyone.
New law mandates for 112 Ecalls
Each year thousands of people tragically die, and millions are injured when the vehicle they are travelling in encounters an accident no-one knowing, or at least able to immediately contact the emergency services. It is believed; this tool is one of the biggest milestones to saving more lives on the roads. As the 122 Ecall proposals for all passenger cars, including light utility vehicles commence, a massive infrastructure will be therefore be set up to deal with the demand.
The 112 ecall activates itself using on-board sensors linked to parts such as the air bags being deployed. The positioning of satellites then provides an accurate location of an accident. It is important to note that the satellites will not be able to track the sensors on the cars to gain private information and everyday whereabouts. It will not be connected to the mobile networks, and it is hacker resistant. The car's sensors are permanently asleep until activated by a crash or manually operated.
Once the sensors are activated the call centre receives a signal on their screen. An operator will be able to locate the vehicle and the quickest route for an emergency service to drive to the scene. Emergency services include police, ambulances, fire fighters and other professionals who may be needed. Additionally, a trained operator will be able to communicate to the driver, passenger or witness in order to console them and acquire more information regarding the severity of the accident.
The 112 ecall has been a working progress for many years. It was originally designed to be voluntarily rolled out across Europe in 2009; it was felt that the implementation of the sensory system was very slow. Some cars are currently fitted with the device privately; the approximate figure is believed to be 0.7 per cent. Many of these private sensorial systems do not offer EU satisfactory call centre communications.
The 112 ecall is hoped to speed up emergency service's speed time by forty per cent in urban locations and by fifty per cent in countryside areas. This simple sensory button is expected to save over 2,500 lives annually and countless other fatalities. Approximately, 28,000 people were tragically killed in a car accident in the EU, and 1.5 million were hurt during 2012.
The cost is estimated at £90 per new car, which I’m sure you would agree is a small price for saving lives.