The automakers implicated on the European markets have called the new EU regulation that calls for obligatory production of automatic emergency calling systems a welcomed addition to the package of safety laws.
Inside the European Union, all vehicles – up to light commercial vans – will need to be sold with the eCall automatic emergency calling device as standard equipment after April 2018. The system will be able to call the closest emergency center if an accident happens, tapping the EU-standard emergency number 112. It would provide the necessary information – including location, time of crash, people inside the vehicle – to the authorities responding to the emergency. “In the near future, eCall will be available for everyone in the EU and will help us mitigate the consequences of road accidents. It will be a major asset in our efforts to halve road fatalities by 2020,” commented European Commission Vice President Siim Kallas, responsible for mobility and transport. According to EU research, the mandatory eCall service might be responsible for reducing 10 percent of road fatalities annually. Last year for example, traffic incidents resulted in the death of 25,700 persons across the European Union. The EU Commission, which came up with the proposition to put the service into mandatory effect, claims the emergency response time of the authorities could drop by 50 percent outside urban areas and by 60 percent in cities.
The eCall system would also have an activation feature from inside the vehicle, allowing witnesses to trigger the system manually as well. Privacy concerns that arise every time a technology feature becomes mandatory by law have been also mitigated – with the devices unable to track the vehicles if an emergency situation is not detected, while the authorities are not allowed to deliver any data to others without first being approved by the owner of the vehicle.
Via Automotive News Europe