Today’s 911 infrastructure was designed for landline phones, making it difficult for 911 centers to receive location and other emergency data for mobile calls. Reliant on the current 911 infrastructure, Uber riders or drivers in an emergency need to verbally speak their location (changing quickly as the car is moving), as well as other situational information (car make/model/color/etc.) for police to be able to identify the car they are in and provide help. In an emergency, this information can be difficult or even impossible for the user to share.
To address these emergency data-sharing challenges, last year Uber partnered with RapidSOS to integrate the RapidSOS Emergency API solution into the Uber app.
“We have been talking to our driver-partners and riders about what matters to them in terms of safety, and overwhelmingly they talked about emergency response as something they really wanted in the app.”Karan Singh, Sr. Product Manager, Uber
Now, in participating cities, when a rider or driver uses the in-app emergency button to call 911, the caller’s name and car’s make, model, color, license plate, and live location are automatically made available to dispatchers, right on their screen.
“We are excited to be one of the initial cities to utilize this technology from RapidSOS and Uber. This partnership will help keep our citizens safe and truly has the potential to save lives.”Athena Butler, Executive Director, Denver 911
The RapidSOS Emergency API Suite provides various APIs to send data from any IoT device or app directly to 911. RapidSOS spent five years developing software catered to the specific needs of the 911 community. RapidSOS software integrates directly into 911 centers, so data from devices appears in existing 911 software dashboards.
The Emergency API allows IoT and app companies to provide users with faster, cheaper, and data-driven emergency response via API – without the need for public safety expertise. Over 3,500 public safety agencies nationwide receive data from hundreds of millions of devices through RapidSOS, saving lives every day.
Today, this feature is available in more than 250 cities and counties in the U.S., and we recently began testing the feature with Uber in Mexico. In addition to providing peace of mind for Uber drivers and riders, the feature has also played a part in improving emergency outcomes.
In Portland, OR, an Uber driver saved 3 women from a potentially dangerous situation with the help of this feature and in Athens-Clarke, GA, an Uber driver used the feature to place a 911 call about an intoxicated passenger who after being dropped off became physically abusive with his girlfriend.
Uber data is available for free to public safety agencies. Learn more and get access for your agency: www.rapidsos.com/portal.