Texting the emergency services – Ofcom proposes to safeguard scheme

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As part of Ofcom’s recent consultation on changes to regulation due to new European law coming in May 2011, Ofcom are proposing ‘a voluntary trial enabling people to text the emergency services should be made mandatory’.

Ofcom report that ‘under the new European regulations, access to the emergency services for disabled people must be as close to that delivered to other consumers as the technology will allow.

While the emergency text scheme does have limitations, such as taking longer to converse by text than by phone, it offers greater equivalence than current alternatives.’

For further details about the scheme, visit the Emergency SMS website at: http://emergencysms.org.uk/