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An Apple emergency feature helped a Vancouver Island search and rescue team save two people’s lives 

A search and rescue team on Vancouver Island is crediting an iPhone feature for sending out a distress signal that helped save two people’s lives. (Courtesy: Arrowsmith Search and Rescue/Instagram) 

A search and rescue team on Vancouver Island is crediting an iPhone emergency alert that helped save two people’s lives after their ATV rolled over on a logging road.

Arrowsmith Search and Rescue said it received an iPhone crash alert on January 19 in Mosaic’s Northwest Bay Division. 

According to Apple’s website, crash detection works on an iPhone or Apple Watch. It’s designed to detect severe car crashes, such as sedans, minivans, SUVs, pickup trucks, and other passenger cars. 

Furthermore, your Apple device sounds an alarm and displays an alert that you can choose to call emergency services or dismiss if you’re able to.

However, if you’re not able to respond back, your device automatically calls emergency services after a 20-second delay. 

B.C. search and rescue continued to say after failed attempts to call the victim’s phone, SAR teams were set up at Northwest Bay logging road according to their FaceBook post.

The rescue team dispatched 4X4 vehicles with chains and a UTV with tracks during the mission. RCMP also launched a drone with heat sensors that flew over the area and found a heat source. 

“The location of the accident had no cell coverage and the subjects were unaware that their phone had sent a distress signal by satellite,” Arrowsmith Search and Rescue said in a statement. 

Despite deep snow and freezing temperatures, the rescuers were able to locate the two people and their ATV that slid off the road and rolled on its side. 

“Had it not done that a large scale search would have been launched when the subjects were reported missing which would have covered a very large area,” SAR added. 

SAR also reported the two victims were handed off to emergency medical care to assess and treat injuries. 



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