Today, on the occasion of European 112 Day, the GSMA announced that it is joining the Advisory Board of the European Emergency Number Association (EENA) to support efforts in advancing the success and quality of emergency services across Europe. The European 112 Day was established in 2009 by the European Union to remind citizens about the emergency services number 112 that can save lives across the region.
The GSMA will work closely with public authorities and emergency service providers within the 112 service chain to ensure that advances in mobile technology continue to enhance this life-saving system.
“The GSMA is committed to reinforcing efforts for improved personal safety across Europe by leveraging mobile communication,” commented Tom Phillips, Chief Government and Regulatory Affairs Officer, GSMA. “We will work with EENA on behalf of mobile network operators to ensure continued improvements in emergency support to European citizens in life-threatening situations.”
As Europe has the highest mobile penetration rate in the world, with total connections of 135 per cent in the region in 2012, mobile communication plays a crucial role in the success of 112. European nationals are also crossing regional borders for personal and professional reasons more than ever before. The number instantly mobilises emergency services in any EU country, free of charge and 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Mobile innovations offer significant potential for saving lives. For example, eCall will be fitted as standard into all new models of cars and light vehicles in the EU from 2015. In the case of severe accidents, an eCall-equipped vehicle will automatically trigger an emergency call decreasing emergency response times. The GSMA’s mAutomotive team is currently working with all European operators to ensure a common awareness and understanding of the importance of timely deployment of eCall, as well as the opportunity it represents in facilitating connected car services.
“We look forward to cooperating with the GSMA to ensure that citizens fully benefit from the capabilities provided by mobile networks during an emergency,” commented Gary Machado, EENA Executive Director.