German carmaker Daimler has announced plans to put QR code stickers on its Mercedes-Benz vehicles, providing emergency personnel with valuable information that can be accessed via a smartphone at the scene.
Daimler, maker of Mercedes-Benz cars and trucks, has announced that starting in 2015 it plans to test the use of QR code stickers on the parts of its vehicles that normally survive most car crashes: inside the gas tank flap and on a pillar between the two passenger’s-side doors. When an emergency responder scans the sticker using a smartphone, a Web page appears that provides specific information — “the location of the airbags, the battery, the tanks, electric cables, high-pressure cylinders and other components” — so that they can cut into the vehicle quickly and rescue trapped victims. The company is waiving the patent so that other companies can use the technology for free.
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What’s the Big Idea?
If a car is severely damaged in an accident, emergency personnel may find themselves looking up the registration to discover the best way to get in, wasting precious time in the process. Daimler isn’t the first company to offer vehicle schematics via smartphone, but it may be the first to do so using custom QR stickers, assuming something better doesn’t come along: The European Commission is funding an initiative that will require every vehicle to carry a device that automatically transmits car location and schematic data in case of an accident.