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Thread: emergency number 112

  1. #1

    emergency number 112

    i was reading this weeks shooting times and in athe letters pages someone says that 112 can be dialed from a mobile in emergencys even when no normal signal and the singnal can be tracked and triangleated to find exactlly where u are.

    does anyone know if this is true
    i only doubt it slightly as i have worked on many jobs(pipelines, forestry,railways, roadbuilding)and done a few courses(chainsaws,railway/pipeline safety) and sat and avoided sleeping throu many a safety lectue by the health and safety natzi's, and almost always in areas with a bad signal and no one has ever mentioned it before, which would surprise me if it worked.

    if anyone knows if this defo works it would be good, it would prob be good to advertise it a bit too as most of us will either work or stalk in areas with no signal, incase we ever need it.

  2. #2
    Whilst 112 really IS a europe-wide emergency services number - it does not go to a satellite or locate your position (outside of the standard cell area identifier).

    Sorry, would be great if that was the case.



  3. #3
    i was only told about it on a course today,one thing it does do if you dial the number and the network is busy it will knock someones line dead so you can get into the network.

  4. #4
    As far as I am aware dialing 112 will open up any available network so you can get help from the emergency services but there must be some network coverage by one of the network providers.
    Total dead zone or underground eg caving it will not work

  5. #5
    This is what I have been lead to believe...............Please correct me if I am wrong guys but I'm not a technical expert !

    The mobile phone making the call can be tracked / traced to within 100 mtrs (ish) using triangulation from the nearest/strongest mobile mast and/or masts.

    Mobile masts have numerous aerials (6-8 ish) positioned so as to give a 360 degree coverage (unlike T/V masts which basically only have 1 aerial)

    Next time you pass a mobile mast have a good look and you will see that they have numerous receivers/transmitter dishes (they are oblong and vertically positioned)

    You don't need satellites to make the system work.

    It's basically how you get your position fixed using a mobile phone which are sometimes described as being GPS (but aren't really)

    Hence the reason that when making an E call they request that you keep the line 'open' so that triangulation data can be gained.

    It's an 'across platform' system which means that when you make an E call it will use any available service provider's aerial and/or system network to connect and maintain the call.

    It's how they track the drug dealer's mobiles.



  6. #6
    Rocking god: I don't think the technology is that good! A few years back I was peripherally involved in a system in the US that was designed to track mobiles without requiring GPS. Not sure my knowledge is particularly current, so take this with a pinch of salt. The requirement came about after an incident whereby someone got trapped in a car, rang emergency services, but they were not able to reach them in time because they had no idea where they were. So in the US, any mobile must be able to give it's location to within something like 100m. More in wikipedia:

    Anyway, the technology I was involved with supposed to locate you by monitoring the time that the cell broadcasts were received. This needed extra hardware at the base stations for timing purposes. In the end, the results were not good enough and project got canned and they went with GPS instead.

    My point is this: AFAIK such hardware does not exist in the UK network and technology was not made to work well enough, so I would be very surprised if they could pinpoint you within 100m.

    BUT, that depends on where you are: mobile phones work by having cells, they can tell definitely which cell you're in, which if you're in a city centre, then that would be quite a small area say less than 100m. Out in the middle of nowhere, then cells could be 60Km across...

    As for 360 degree coverage: yes that's possible, but usually although base stations transmit in all directions, typically it's divided into 120 degree segments per transmitter. However you can get lamp post sized ones that really are 360 degree that cover small areas. When I say lamp post, they really are disguised as lamp posts. You can also get base stations disguised as trees, you just have to know what to look for!

    As for 112, I was under the impression that it's designed to be the same as 999 in the UK, the difference being that it will work in any country, you don't have to know the emergency number for the country you are in.

  7. #7
    112 was supposed to be the emergency number that would be the same throughout the whole of the European union and was introduced piggy back fashion to 999 many years ago (at least 25) but not widely advertised.
    It is not that long ago that certain remote parts of the U.K. were still not connected to the 999 system, never mind rolling out the 112 system.

    I am only guessing but possibly it is because the E.U. is constantly enlarging that a common emergency number has not been introduced, or could it be that the various member states have not been able to reach agreement on which number to use?

  8. #8


    Some places on Arran even a text can take days to arrive, About 9 miles from me in Chester even the army don't get a net signal.

  9. #9
    thanks for all the very knowledgeable replies

    unfortunately some off them went straight over my head.
    so if the brown stuff hits the fan in the back o beyond ur still better with 999 but if no signasl u might have a slightly better chance on 112, but u still need a faint signal from 1 provider, and u still have to have a fair idea of where u are as it cant track u exact enough to send the calvery?(spelling)to help.
    does that sound about rite in very basic terms.

    the fella who wrote the letter to shooting times had been told ot on a course too. i must admit if it was as good as made out the health and safety boys would be all over it and the amoount off health and safety briefings and courses i've done i would have thought someone would have mentioned it.
    thanks again for all the replies

  10. #10
    I think the guy who wrote in to Shooting Times was either misinformed or misunderstood. 999 and 112 are interchangeable and come up in the exchange in almost the same way.
    I am not up to date on the tracking systems but had serious doubts when I read the story.
    As regards a signal for a mobile phone, if the signal is poor or non existant it doesn't matter what number you dial you won't get through.

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