European Solutions for Deaf Callers to Emergency Number Demonstrated (7/5/12)
Emergency services and the European emergency number 1-1-2 are not fully accessible to the deaf and hard of hearing. Therefore, the Responding to All Citizens needing help (REACH112) project was held last week in Santiago de Compostela, Spain.
"This three-year project clearly demonstrated that communications solutions such as Total Conversation, a combination of voice, video and live text, can be implemented for person-to-person communications and for 1-1-2 accessibility," said Uberto Delprato, project coordinator of REACH112.
During the final conference, deaf associations, emergency services and telecommunications providers saw first-hand the technological solutions deployed and tested during the three last years in five pilot countries — France, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. The project was also a forerunner for the deployment of the next-generation 1-1-2 (NG 1-1-2) in Europe.
"Partly based on REACH112 types of solutions, NG 1-1-2 will contribute to make emergency services accessible for people with disabilities,” said Gary Machado, executive director of the European Emergency Number Association (EENA). “To make NG 1-1-2 a reality, we need a global testing of IP access to emergency services and even more stakeholders involved."
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