Rapid assistance in many holiday countries

München, (PresseBox) - In Germany it takes an average ten to 15 minutes for the first emergency vehicle to arrive - provided the emergency call is made immediately after the accident and includes an accurate description of the location. Yet in 30 percent of all accidents, those involved don't know precisely where they are. This applies particularly when they are on holiday, on a business trip or on some remote road. BMW already responded to this ten years ago, since when it has offered an emergency call function by which the vehicle automatically alerts the BMW call centre and transmits its exact GPS location data. This operates not just in Germany, but also in popular holiday destinations such as Austria, Italy and, very soon, France and Switzerland as well. "Our experience shows time and again that, especially on less frequented roads and also after dark, for example, cars involved in an accident are often only spotted by other road users by chance and therefore much too late. In cases like these in particular, the automatic emergency call function with its accurate transfer of position and vehicle data can be lifesaving," says Gerhard Kleeberger, head of the Bavarian Red Cross emergency services centre in Straubing.

Apart from Germany, Austria, Italy and the United Kingdom - shortly to be joined by France - the BMW emergency call function is also available in Canada, the USA, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Australia. The emergency call is triggered either automatically when the crash sensors are activated, or manually by pressing a button. Either way, the car independently relays its precise GPS location data along with key vehicle data. Assistance is then summoned by the BMW staff who man the call centre around the clock. They make telephone contact with the car's occupants, inform the nearest emergency services according to the individual situation and, based on their psychological training, provide reassurance to the passengers. In Italy too, incidentally, German is used to communicate with BMW drivers from Germany, as will be the case in France and Switzerland as well from November 2007.

About BMW ConnectedDrive

BMW combines individual online, assistance and service systems in the vehicle under the overall concept of ConnectedDrive. These are services that can be directly accessed using the navigation system or phone and they make a significant contribution to the enhancement of comfort and safety. For example, BMW Assist accesses the latest traffic information and provides a personal information service, alongside the emergency call function. Any data requested on restaurants, cinemas or hotels can be incorporated directly in the BMW navigation system as a destination. Internet-based services such as calling up share prices, weather reports and free parking spaces come under BMW Online. The vehicle uses BMW TeleServices to contact a BMW Service Partner automatically when it needs a service. Further information is available online at www.bmw-connecteddrive.com.

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