A British snowboarder is crediting the Emergency SOS feature in his iPhone with saving his life after falling down a crevasse in the Alps. Originally introduced on the Apple Watch in 2016, the Emergency SOS feature made its way to the iPhone the following year and has been credited with helping many victims since then. While it helped some people get timely help following medical emergencies, others have reported being saved from physical assault because of the feature.
Alongside the iPhone, the Apple Watch also comes with many safety features that people have often credited for saving their lives. Last month, the watch was believed to have saved the life of a 71-year-old woman from Saint Petersburg, Florida, after it auto-dialed 911 when its fall detection feature detected that she had taken a hard fall. The watch also automatically sent her geolocation to the 911 dispatcher, helping the paramedics reach her in time.
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The latest instance of the iPhone saving someone’s life came last month when snowboarder and personal trainer Tim Blakey got into trouble while snowboarding alone on a glacier near Zermatt, Switzerland. According to 7 News, Blakey fell into a 16-foot crevasse during one of his downhill runs and could not climb his way back up the sheer icy cliff. Unfortunately, Blakey’s phone was also losing battery fast and had just three percent battery life remaining. On top of that, cellular connectivity was down to 3G, thanks to his location at 10,000 feet above sea level.
Emergency SOS Feature Worked As Expected
Fortunately for Blakey, he remembered that he could call emergency services using the iPhone’s Emergency SOS feature, which automatically sends the victim’s exact location to rescuers. The feature worked as advertised, and rescuers soon arrived to pull Blakey up from the crevasse. He was then sent to the hospital, where he was treated for an injured ankle before taking his scheduled flight back to London that evening. It was a situation that could have gone very wrong for Blakey, but for some quick thinking on his part, efficient Swiss rescue services, and of course, the iPhone’s Emergency SOS feature.
Blakey later posted the story on Instagram, admitting that he got into trouble due to his overconfidence. According to him, he was “lured into a false sense of security” due to his 17-year snowboarding experience and failed to research the areas he was snowboarding adequately. Blakey also thanked many people and agencies for saving his life, including the Swiss Rescue services and every member of the emergency response team that rescued him. He also remembered to say a ‘Thank You’ to Apple and its Emergency SOS feature for letting him easily contact emergency services despite the low battery and poor cellular connectivity.