APCO Approves Telematics Crash Data Standards for 9-1-1 Centers (7/18/12)
The Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) International approved the Vehicular Emergency Data Set (VEDS) for use in pilots or market deployments involving the transmission of critical vehicle crash data to 9-1-1 centers, particularly by telematics service providers (TSPs).
Following the completion of a nearly two-year effort by the joint APCO/National Emergency Number Association (NENA) advanced automatic collision notification (AACN) data standardization working group, the VEDS was reviewed and approved by APCO’s standards development committee technical subcommittee. VEDS conforms to the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM), a national standard for information sharing among federal, state and local government agencies.
The intent of the VEDS is to establish a uniform data template or record for the future collection and transmission of vehicle crash information among multiple emergency responders that can be updated as the response unfolds. A key catalyst for VEDS is the emerging deployment of AACN by TSPs, such as OnStar and Agero, which provide crash severity information. These companies, along with Hughes Telematics and Ford Motor, actively participated in the development of the VEDS documentation.
Beyond basic notification of airbag deployment and GPS satellite-based location of the vehicle, AACN entails the aggregation of in-vehicle crash sensor data to better inform emergency responders prior to their arrival at the accident scene about the potential severity of the crash and the likelihood of severe injuries to the vehicle’s occupants. AACN information was recently included in the federal guidelines for field triage of injured patients. TSPs also can provide responders with a detailed description of the vehicle, emergency contacts provided by the vehicle owner and whether crash sensors indicate the vehicle was involved in a rollover, which may influence what kinds of resources are dispatched to the scene.
“VEDS is a visionary document that demonstrates APCO’s commitment to get ahead of deployments in digital technology by identifying only those data elements that are important to multiple responders after a vehicle crash,” said APCO President Gregg Riddle. “The public-safety community encourages the delivery of AACN information, whether it’s communicated verbally or via data, as an opportunity to enhance and accelerate emergency response to a vehicle crash.”
APCO also released “Recommended Best Practices for PSAPs When Processing Vehicle Telematics Calls from Telematics Service Providers (TSPs),” a revision document to the best practices released by the APCO telematics task force in 2009. The document offers clear guidelines for public-safety answering point (PSAP) personnel in handling vehicle telematics and AACN calls from TSPs and updates the information the telematics operator is expected to provide. It also contains updated TSP contact information, escalation procedures and a glossary of terms that clarifies new in-vehicle technologies. It doesn’t define local response procedures or protocols, allowing each agency to establish appropriate call-handling and dispatch policies.
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