We have seen QR codes used for a multitude of reasons, but now German car giant Mercedes believe they can be used to save lives. The Mercedes QR code scheme is already earning the company positive PR, largely due to their waiving of patent rights. This has the potential to be one of the simplest yet most effective car safety launches of 2015
They believe that adding Quick Response (QR) code stickers to Mercedes cars can provide emergency services with the kind of car specific information, in a timely manner, needed to help them save the lives of people caught up in road accidents.
QR Codes for those who are unaware of them, are small bar code like squares which can be scanned with QR readers. They provide a 3D image that smart phone can read which directs the scanner to a web page or download. In this case, scanning the code will direct the fireman or paramedic to a page related to the car or van model in question. This page will provide a wealth of information that the emergency services can use, such as cut points on the car (the position which is safest to cut the car’s roof off)
Merc considered patenting the idea, but in the spirit of wider safety have waived this in order to encourage rival brands to use their system to save more lives. Waiving the right to patent means that other companies avoid paying a licence fee, or being blocked off entirely from using the system.
The QR solution is intended to save the emergency workers from having to call in the cars registration plate in order to identify the make and model of seriously damaged cars.
“[The QR code] informs about the location of the airbags, the battery, the tanks, electric cables, high-pressure cylinders and other components – in the case of hybrid models the location of the additional batteries and high-voltage cables, too,” a press release said.
“This information can save lives, because in an emergency every action counts and every second is precious.”
The QR code would be housed on the inside of the fuel tank flap. The proposal is to launch in 2015