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This newsletter presents the final results of the Pan-European eCall deployment project I_HeERO, just as Europe prepares for the mandatory deployment of eCall on board all new cars and light trucks starting in April 2018.

After three years of activity the I_HeERO project is delivering results over a range of topics related to the implementation of eCall based on the pan-European emergency number 112, in particular the necessary upgrade of Public Safety Answering Points to handle emergency calls placed from newly equipped vehicles.

Beyond these necessary upgrades, the project team studied the potential extension of eCall capabilities to other vehicle types: heavy goods vehicles, long-distance coaches and powered two-wheelers. Prototypes of on-board eCall units have been developed for all these vehicle categories, with recommendations sent to the standardisation body CEN.

While a great deal of effort went into conformity assessments of public service answering points, more work lies ahead: emergency services need to be able to move data between different agencies more efficiently, and the eCall infrastructure will need to adapt to the steady migration to 4G and future 5G networks.

Thanks to the work of its eleven participating EU Member States and close to one hundred Associate Partners, the I_HeERO project has successfully implemented eCall handling capabilities across Europe. Road users are now expected to reap tangible safety benefits thanks to faster response times, crash geolocation, and automated emergency calls following single-vehicle accidents.