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Automatic emergency call system for new cars

MEPs have approved new European rules to ensure that, by 2015, all new cars must be fitted with eCall devices to alert the rescue services to road crashes automatically.

The in-vehicle eCall system uses 112 emergency call technology to alert the emergency services automatically to the location of serious road accidents. This should enable qualified and equipped paramedics to get to the scene within the first “golden hour” of the accident, says the resolution.

This could save up to 2,500 lives a year and reduce injury severity by 10 to 15%, it adds.

The resolution, approved this week, is non-binding.

"The European Parliament has given its clear support for all motorists in Europe to benefit from an emergency call system free of charge. Since the voluntary approach has failed, we urge the Commission to propose legislative measures as soon as possible to ensure the eCall system will be mandatory in all EU countries by 2015", said co-rapporteurs Olga Sehnalova (S&D, CZ) and Dieter-Lebrecht Koch (EPP, DE).

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