The European Parliament unites with an all-time historic majority for an efficient European emergency number 112 and increased safety for its citizens

Brussels 13 September 2007On Thursday 6 September, 2007 the European Parliament adopted a Written Declaration requesting an evaluation of the quality of the operation of "112", the little known European emergency number. This declaration was championed by a cross-party coalition consisting of Vice Presidents Diana Wallis, Gérard Onesta and Alejo Vidal-Quadras, Members of European Parliament (MEP), and by Marc Tarabella and Dimitrios Papadimoulis, MEP. The Declaration, adopted with the largest majority ever to have been attained, sends a clear political signal to the Commission and Council at the start of this parliamentary year.


Speaking in Strasbourg, the five MEPs stated: "The tragic natural disasters which occurred in Europe this summer should remind us how important it is for all of our citizens to know this emergency number, which is already in operation in all 27 Member States. Another crucial aspect is that all calls should be properly dealt with. Unfortunately, a large majority of European citizens are not familiar with the 112 number, and too many transposition problems persist in the Member States, who often lack the necessary technology or organisation."

Indeed, despite legislation going back 16 years and several problems areas identified, the European Commission has only published one document evaluating the implementation of 112, and even this turned out to contain inaccuracies.

The MEPs continued: "Now that the Parliament as a whole has endorsed our declaration, we fully expect the European Commission to create a European day to promote awareness of "112" - on 11 February, and to proceed without delay to an evaluation of all 112 services in Europe. To this day, only Portugal, currently holding the rotating Presidency of the Union, has made such an evaluation. We hope that it will show leadership and encourage the other Member States to go through the same process."

Leslie Versweyveld

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