EU Directive 2015/758 requires that from 31 March 2018 all new passenger cars type-approved from that date must be equipped with an EU eCall system as standard. This has long been the situation at Mercedes-Benz: Mercedes-Benz emergency call was launched back in 2012, and has featured as standard in all model series since Mercedes me was introduced in September 2014. Mercedes-Benz emergency call is currently available in 35 countries. As a particularly useful feature in an emergency abroad, communication takes place not in the language of the country in which the vehicle is situated, but in the language which the driver has set in the infotainment system.

Everyone is afraid of traffic accidents. Even worse is the thought of being unable to get help and not being found. Because every second can be vital after a serious accident. The Mercedes-Benz emergency call function is able to notify the rescue services automatically in the shortest of time after a serious crash, supplying them with the vehicle’s exact GPS position and other important information, such as the identified number of people in the vehicle (by reference to the locked seat belts) and the vehicle’s direction of travel.

All current Mercedes-Benz models are equipped with the Mercedes-Benz emergency call system as standard. The emergency call function is active free of charge throughout the vehicle’s entire lifecycle. It can be triggered automatically or by the driver pressing the corresponding button in the vehicle. Manual activation serves to report an accident which the driver has observed or to call for help if an occupant of the vehicle is experiencing health problems, such as a heart attack.

The emergency call function is triggered automatically after deployment of one of the pyrotechnic belt tensioners or an airbag in the car. The vehicle then establishes a voice connection with the Mercedes-Benz emergency call centre. If the emergency call centre does not receive a response, it will immediately alert the nearest rescue service.

The Mercedes-Benz emergency call centres responsible for Europe are located in Magdeburg, Berlin and Barcelona, while Mercedes-Benz drivers in Asia receive assistance from Tokyo, Shanghai and Manila. Over 3.5 million Mercedes-Benz vehicles are currently equipped with the system. This figure does not include vehicles sold in the USA, where Mercedes-Benz emergency call has been installed as standard in all passenger cars since 1998.

Mercedes-Benz emergency call is currently available in 35 European countries. These also include countries in which the service will not become compulsory on 31 March 2018.

Mercedes-Benz launched the emergency call function in combination with COMAND Online back in 2012. This mobile phone-based variant was followed in September 2014 by the permanently installed system in conjunction with Mercedes me. In this current version, the data are transmitted via the Mercedes me communications module with an integrated SIM card, i.e. independently of a mobile phone linked to the vehicle.

The European Mercedes-Benz emergency call centres receive some 20,000 emergency calls every month. According to the EU Commission, immediate notification by eCall coupled with forwarding of the accident coordinates could reduce the time the emergency services take to arrive by 50 percent in rural areas and 40 percent in towns. This could mean up to 2500 fewer road deaths per year in the EU.

Mercedes-Benz emergency call offers additional functions beyond the scope of the mandatory eCall system. The call is not conducted in the language of the relevant country, but in the language which the driver has programmed into the infotainment system. This is useful in an accident abroad – if a German holidaymaker has an accident in Spain, for example. The Mercedes-Benz emergency call centre then notifies the nearest rescue centre.

A further special feature of the Mercedes-Benz system is that in addition to data transmission via the Mercedes me communication module, the key data relating to the accident are also sent by SMS to the Mercedes-Benz emergency call centre – to make doubly sure that the information is received.

Source: Daimler AG