Brussels, 15 April 2014
Vice-President Kallas welcomes Parliament's vote on 112 eCall
Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas, responsible for Mobility and Transport, welcomed the European Parliament's vote today on establishing emergency call response centres for the handling of 112 eCalls. The eCall system automatically dials 112 - Europe's single emergency number - in the event of a serious accident.
Speaking after the vote, Vice-President Kallas said: "In the near future, eCall will be available for everyone in the EU, and will help us mitigate the consequences of road accidents. eCall will be a major asset in our efforts to halve road fatalities by 2020".
It is estimated that 112 eCall can speed up emergency response times by 40% in urban areas and 50% in the countryside and can reduce the number of fatalities by at least 4% and the number of severe injuries by 6%.
The Parliament's plenary vote is an important step in the EU road safety strategy to reduce road fatalities and serious injuries. It ensures that once cars equipped with eCall will be on the EU roads, the necessary infrastructure will be ready to handle the calls and to rescue drivers and passengers more quickly throughout the European Union.
eCall is a low cost solution. Because it is only activated in case of a serious accident, driver behaviour cannot be tracked during normal use of the car.
In June 2013, the Commission proposed as part of the eCall initiative a Decision to ensure the deployment of the necessary infrastructure for the proper receipt and handling of the 112 eCalls.
The Parliament vote confirmed the agreement in "trilogue" negotiations, which provided for the deployment, at least 6 months before the date of application of the Regulation concerning the mandatory fitting of the eCall device in vehicles (personal cars and commercial light vehicles), of the eCall infrastructure required for the handling of all eCalls on the EU territory, with a final deadline for the deployment set at 1 st October 2017.
-the right of each Member State to organise its emergency services in the way most cost effective and appropriate to its needs, including the right to let private organisations recognised by the Member State deal with the receipt and handling of eCalls, in accordance with the specifications laid down by Delegated Regulation (EU) No 305/2013.
-112 eCalls handling free of charge for the users.
The agreement will be formally approved by the Council in the coming weeks.
On the in-vehicle part of the initiative, work is still on-going in the Council and the Parliament, in order to reach an agreement on the deployment of eCall in each new type of passenger cars and light commercial vehicles.
For more information on the Commission's proposed Decision, please see IP/13/353 .
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