July 12, 2005
Add 'ICE' to your mobile phone

Following up after the London bombings last week, the media are picking up a good advice from an experienced paramedic:

Mobile users are being urged to enter a number in their phone's memory under the heading ICE, standing for "in case of emergency".

Paramedics or police would quickly be able to find the number and use it to contact a relative or friend who could identify the victim and give vital information such as details of any medical conditions.

The idea has come from Bob Brotchie, a paramedic in the East Anglian ambulance service.

"I was reflecting on some difficult calls I have attended, where people were unable to speak to me through injury or illness and we were unable to ascertain who they were," he told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme.

"In trying to establish their identity, I discovered that many people obviously carry mobile phones, and we were using them to discover who they were.

"It occurred to me that if we had a uniform approach to searching inside a mobile phone for an emergency contact, that would make it easier for everyone."

So; add your loved one and/or family members to your SIM card prefixed by 'ICE' to ensure they get the message if something *knock wood* should happen...

On a Nokia phone, here's how:

  • Menu -> Contacts -> Search
  • Find your 'in case of emergency' contact.
  • Click 'Details', 'Options', 'Copy', 'Keep Original'
  • Find the copied entry, select 'Details', 'Options', 'Edit Name' and edit the name to read something like ICE: Firstname or ICE: Parents or whatever easily identifiable name. The idea is that someone needing to find your loved ones quick can open your address book, search for I and find it right away...

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