Anticipating eCall for motorcycles, the Crash Care helmet is saving lives

Published: 
23 November 2018
Although originally designed for motorcycles and bicycles, the system can also be used for horse riding, skiing, fire fighters, police officers, and the military.
Although originally designed for motorcycles and bicycles, the system can also be used for horse riding, skiing, fire fighters, police officers, and the military.

The innovative Crash Care helmet utilises 3D sensors, Galileo-based positioning and mobile phone networks to detect, and respond to, motorcycle and bicycle accidents, like the eCall system for cars.

Imagine you are out riding you bicycle or cruising on your motorcycle along a picturesque country road. Far from anything, you simply take in the open road and enjoy the rural scenery. Then suddenly, out of nowhere, a deer darts out in front of you. You swerve to avoid hitting it and, in doing so, slide on some loose gravel. Falling off your bike, your head bounces against the pavement, leaving you unconscious in the middle of the road.

Normally, your well-being would depend on a vehicle coming by, seeing you and calling for help. But, luckily for you, your Crash Care smart helmet has already detected the accident and automatically alerted the emergency helpdesk about your location.

Help is on the way.

Automatic for the biker

The innovative, German made Crash Care device is a compact sensor that can be attached to nearly all types of motorcycle and bicycle helmets. Using a 3D sensor and gyroscope, the system not only detects when an accident happens, but also how strong the impact was. Thanks to its built-in Galileo-enabled receiver, Crash Care uses GNSS-based positioning information to determine the exact location of the accident.

“All of this information, along with previously added medical background information, is automatically transmitted via SMS to local emergency services and other third parties,” says Crash Care inventor Dr. Winrich Hoseit. “It even provides vital data, so doctors have a clear picture of the situation before the patient arrives in the emergency room.” 

Crash Care is compatible with all European mobile networks. To provide users with more peace of mind, the system’s lithium battery guarantees a usage period of 10 years – with no need for recharging. Crash Care even automatically self-checks and notifies the user of any potential glitches.  

Looking ahead

Although originally designed for motorcycles and bicycles, Dr. Hoseit notes that the system can also be used by equestrians, skiers, fire fighters, police officers, and the military. In fact, the company is currently in talks with the German military about developing a satellite-based system, as opposed to using mobile phone networks as the standard system does. There are also plans to implement the Crash Care system into hard hats, so those working in construction sites, remote oil rigs and other accident-prone sites can benefit from the extra layer of security the system provides. 

Having been certified, Crash Care is set to hit the market by mid-2019. In total, 17,000 orders have already been placed across Germany, Austria, the UK and the Netherlands.

Aftermarket eCall

The Crash Care team is exploring the possibility of creating a version that can be inserted into vehicles, providing a service similar to Europe’s eCall system. eCall devices automatically dial the European emergency number 112 to alert rescue services in the event of an accident. The system sends the exact location to responders, along with the time of the incident and the direction of travel, even if the driver is unconscious or unable to make a phone call, thereby reducing the response time for road accidents and saving more lives.

“According to EU law, all new vehicles sold in Europe must be eCall enabled,” explains Dr. Hoseit. “What we aim to do is to make the Crash Care architecture available to provide the same service in legacy vehicles, or those that were manufactured before eCall went into effect.”

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Updated: Nov 23, 2018