ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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New Standard Facilitates Faster Emergency Response Time for Road Accidents

New York, Nov 25, 2009

A new International Standard developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) will help emergency centers to quickly dispatch life-saving staff and equipment to the scene of a car crash. ISO 24978:2009, Intelligent transport systems – ITS Safety and emergency messages using any available wireless media – Data registry procedures, guides automatic safety-related messages sent from vehicles to emergency services.

Many vehicles are equipped with a crash sensor that automatically notifies emergency responders of the time and location of the accident. With this information, responders can arrive at the scene faster, providing medical attention to passengers as quickly as possible. It is critical that these messages are clearly understood by all emergency services in order to provide the best support after an accident occurs.

The new ISO standard allows all relevant parties to gain accurate and immediate information from these messages through the use of a safety and emergency messages data registry. It provides the framework in which to operate a database of these safety-related messages and data concepts, along with a set of standardized set of protocols, parameters, and a method of management for an updateable data registry.

The registry can also contain messages other than those related to accidents. For example, a vehicle driving over ice or through fog can pass a message to other vehicles nearby, or to the local road management center, to alert them to the danger. The metadata for such messages is stored in the safety and emergency data registry so that it can be understood when received.

“ISO 24978 will help make information provided by the vehicle understandable at the point of reception by emergency and rescue services,” said Bob Williams, the leader of the working group that developed the standard. “The benefits are clear and significant, particularly for incidents that take place in remote areas or far from the town center. Statistics show that knowledge of the exact location reduces the response time of the rescue teams by 40 % in built-up areas and 50 % in rural environments.”

ISO 24978:2009 was developed by ISO Technical Committee (TC) 204, Intelligent transport systems. The U.S. holds the chairmanship and the secretariat of TC 204. Michael Noblett of Connexis serves as chairman, and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has delegated secretariat duties to the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA). TIA and the Electronic Industries Alliance (EIA) – both ANSI members and accredited standards developers – jointly serve as the ANSI-accredited Technical Advisory Group (TAG) administrator to TC 204.

For more information, see the ISO news release.

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