The European Parliament adopted the report by British MEP Gary Titley on the introduction of the eCall system by a large majority.
Most speakers in the debate warmly welcomed the introduction by 2009 of an eCall system installed in vehicles which would use satellite technology to alert the nearest emergency services to the exact location of a vehicle in the event of an accident and which could save up to 2,500 lives a year.
Ecall would bring about a reduction of up to 15% in the gravity of injuries. MEPs, however, voiced concern on the unwillingness of some Member States to implement the eCall system as soon as possible. So far, a majority of Member States have been slow in the adoption and promotion of 112 as an emergency number. MEPs, as well as Commissioner Viviane REDING, called on these Member States to speed up the introduction of eCall. Mrs Reding said that infringement procedures will not be excluded.
The agonising wait for emergency services after a road accident could be cut by up to 50% while European road deaths could fall by 5-10% under road safety proposals set to be endorsed by Parliament. A new "eCall" system installed in vehicles will use satellite technology to alert the nearest emergency services to the exact location of a vehicle in the event of an accident. The system would work anywhere in the EU benefiting the 100 million people who travel abroad by car each year.
MEPs on the Committee on Transport and Tourism recommend that Parliament "supports and encourages" the European eCall initiative that "could save up to 2,500 lives a year and bring about a reduction of up to 15% in the gravity of injuries". This view comes in a non-binding own initiative report tabled by Gary TITLEY (PES, UK) on road safety and the introduction of the eCall system.
The report recommends that all European authorities include eCall information within their public road safety campaigns, and that "the large-scale-roll-out of eCall by 2009 is a priority of the eSafety initiative".
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