Emergency+ is a free application developed by Australia's emergency services and industry partners. The application works across Australia, using GPS functionality built into smartphones to help a Triple Zero (000) caller provide critical location details required to mobilise emergency services. First launched in 2013, the application has been downloaded more than 2.2 million times and has provided assistance to people facing an emergency.
Location accuracy is critical information for Triple Zero (000) call takers. The quicker an accurate location is established, the sooner emergency services can be dispatched and render assistance. With the vast majority of Triple Zero (000) calls originating from mobile telephones today, the Emergency+ application is a vital Government initiative to improve public safety and emergency service response times.
The re-launch of the Emergency+ application
Led by Fire and Rescue NSW, the national Triple Zero Awareness Working Group is re-launching the upgraded Emergency+ application from 30 October 2020. Improvements include:
- A redesigned Emergency+ application logo and new colour scheme
- The inclusion of ‘what3words’, a software enhancement allowing Triple Zero (000) callers to provide their exact location quickly and accurately with just three words describing the address to assist responding emergency services
- Inclusion of a ‘pin drop’ function to locate and report an emergency more accurately
- Inclusion of CPR videos to equip people with lifesaving skills
- An update to the end user licence agreement allowing international students and international travellers in Australia to access the Emergency+ application.
Downloading the new Emergency+ application
Emergency+ is available for free download via the Apple Application Store and the Google Play Store.
The what3words software enhancement
Emergency+ now also includes what3words functionality to assist in identifying caller location for emergency service responders. When callers need to report an emergency in hard-to-find locations, the Emergency+ application gives them the option to tell emergency services their location, either in the form of their closest street address, their GPS coordinates or their what3words address.
Emergencies can happen in places that are difficult for a caller to describe such as an unmarked stretch of beach, bush track or unfamiliar road, to outside a crowded sports stadium. The what3words functionality contained within Emergency+ complements other address identifiers – like your street address or GPS co-ordinates – and is a quick and simple way to communicate your precise location. The system has given every 3 square metres on earth a unique three-word identifier: a what3words address.
With this available within Emergency+, Triple Zero (000) callers can confirm their exact location quickly and accurately using just three words. Unlike street addresses, what3words addresses work offline, so can be used in remote areas with poor data connection. what3word addresses are as accurate as GPS coordinates and are simpler than latitude and longitude coordinates.
A new feature that assists with the what3words functionality is the ability for users of Emergency+ to ‘drop a pin’ to fix their location on the application’s map. This enhancement avoids changes in your latitude and longitude co-ordinates or the what3word identifiers during the reporting of an emergency.
Australia’s government will continue to monitor feedback received from emergency services and application store reviews from Emergency+ application users. This will allow for continuous improvements to the application into the future.
National Relay Service
National Relay Service provides additional ways for people who are deaf, or have a hearing or speech impairment to access emergency services.
For more information about the service, see
National Relay Service.