According to an announcement today from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), mobile calls to Triple Zero will now provide emergency call-takers with improved location information.
Calls from landlines to emergency services have always provided subscriber addresses to dispatchers, allowing faster response times in some cases. Previously, though, mobile phones were not been able to provide this information automatically; callers had to describe where they were, potentially slowing response times.
Thanks to a recent meeting of the ACMA’s Emergency Call Services Advisory Committee, all emergency services organisations throughout Australia have now implemented functionality to automatically receive better information about the location of a mobile caller.
All mobile calls transmit location information, with data accurate from between 50 metres and 90 kilometres, depending on the number of base stations in the area – obviously the location is better in urban areas as opposed to regional. The Triple Zero service is currently operated by Telstra, which connects to callers within 10 seconds 98.7% of the time, and improved location information means faster response for emergency services.
Richard Bean, acting chairperson of the ACMA, said of the development:
Locating callers quickly in an emergency situation is vital, and I congratulate the mobile carriers and emergency services organisations (ESOs) on this tremendous initiative. Optus, Vodafone, Telstra (in its capacity as mobile carrier, the emergency call provider and initial answering point for Triple Zero 000 calls) and ESOs have been working in partnership to upgrade their relevant systems.