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E call

Published on Apr 02, 2024


In the event of an accident ,the onboard e-call device transmits an emergency call to the most appropriate public service answering point along with certain vehicle related data. Actually it works either with the human intervention or even without it; there will also always be a voice connection between the vehicle and the rescue centre in addition to the data link.

The communication says not only that something has happened but also how serious the accident is and gives the location of vehicle involved in accident. The European Union is promoting eCall to reduce the number of roadway fatalities by minimizing the response time when an accident has occurred. eCall is a combination of an In Vehicle System (IVS), a device with a GSM cell phone and GPS location capability, and a corresponding infrastructure of Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs).


Road accidents are one of the most common causes of death among European Union citizens. Thanks to advances in wireless technologies, intelligent systems are arising to help develop safety and efficiency services for road transportation. A clear example is the European eCall initiative. It is widely accepted that providing rapid assistance to victims of road accidents is of utmost importance, especially in severe accidents, in which the victims are not able to call for help and also in secondary roads, in which vehicles may not be easily located by rescue personnel. Moreover, patients with multisystem trauma need surgery as soon as possible.

The commercial solutions to the described emergency call systems are based on an in-vehicle telematics control unit with a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver and cellular network connectivity, mainly the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM), connected to the car sensors. Fig illustrates the common architecture of such systems, which are provided by a number of car makers and service providers in some countries. These systems trigger an emergency call upon the detection of an accident by the car sensors or by manual interaction of the user, i.e., the so-called SOS button.


eCall is a European initiative intended to bring rapid assistance to motorists involved in a collision anywhere in the European Union. The idea for such a technology was first presented in the context of the German youth science competition Jugend forscht in 2001. The eCall initiative aims to deploy a device installed in all vehicles that will automatically dial 112 in the event of a serious road accident, and wirelessly send airbag deployment and impact sensor information, as well as GPS coordinates to local emergency agencies.

Many companies are involved with telematics technology to use in different aspects of eCall including in-vehicle systems, wireless data delivery, and public safety answering point systems. Standardization of communication protocols and human language issues are some of the obstacles. Prototypes have been successfully tested with GPRS and in-band signalling over cellular networks. At the same time proprietary eCall solutions that rely on SMS exist already today from car makers such as BMW, PSA and Volvo Cars.


Actually it works either with the human intervention or even without it. By pushing a button in the car, the call to the emergency centre can also be made manually. In either case, be it made manually or automatically, there will also always be a voice connection between the vehicle and the rescue centre in addition to the data link. Thus, further details on the accident can be given if anybody in the car is capable of speaking and answering questions. In the event of an accident, the on-board e-Call device transmits an emergency call to the most appropriate public service answering point (PSAP) along with certain vehicle-related data (notably the vehicle's precise location).

E call Principle

E call Box

The eCall box is a communications-enabled device, where the communications technologies shall encompass at least GSM and may include Short-Range Communications (SRC) if the crash sensor is physically separated from the eCall box hosting the proposed emergency call service. This service is a piece of software that can be installed in any kind of box, that is, an aftermarket device connectable or not to the vehicle’s network (CAN) and/or on-board computer; a portable device (PDA, laptop); or a mobile phone and communicates with the crash sensor through a wired or wireless link. This scheme is especially useful for two-wheeled vehicles and Second-hand cars, which have no in-built emergency system and are out the scope of the future European eCall standard.

Architecture And Standardization Of Ecall

The eCall architecture uses the GSM cellular network to communicate between the vehicle in incident and the Public Service Answering Point (PSAP). The future eCall service will use the single pan-European emergency call number E112 to ensure that eCall has full roaming capabilities in Europe. Fig. a depicts the elements of the eCall architecture defined by the eCall Driving Group: the vehicle, the network and the PSAP, and shows the flow of voice and data calls established between the vehicle and the PSAP in case of an emergency. The standardization activities related to the technical solution for the implementation of the architecture in Fig. a cover two main issues: the transport protocol by which the Minimum Set of Data (MSD) will be sent via the cellular network to the PSAP, and the content and format of the MSD.

E call


There by we conclude that this e-call technology is highly efficient and is going to play a predominant role in future emergency service system. But in practical perception the government must take the responsibility of implementing this technology and take all the measures to make the best use of this e-call and we can handle one of the serious concern of today’s leap in the number of accidental deaths.

Another conclusion is that if there should be a Pan-European eCall system, the vehicle manufactures or the network providers can’t develop this themselves. It is very important to include the public authorities in this matter and the public body for this has to be the EU. Only here can a solution be pushed across all EU Member States.

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