EMTEL * Activity Report

EMTEL Activity Report 2017

Chairman: Daniel Voisard, OFCOM (CH)

Responsible for identifying the operational and technical requirements of those involved in the provision of emergency communications, for conveying these requirements to other ETSI committees and for liaison with other organisations involved in this field 


During 2017 our Emergency Telecommunications committee (SC EMTEL) focused particularly on emergency applications for smartphones, networks for emergency services and their conformance, and Internet of Things (IoT) devices in the provision of emergency situations.

We completed our work on the requirements, the functional architecture, the protocol and the procedures for implementing the Pan-European Mobile Emergency Application. There are presently hundreds of emergency calling applications in use across Europe, but their use is constrained to the boundaries of the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) with which they are integrated. The resulting Technical Specification (TS), scheduled for publication in 2018, makes it possible for data to arrive at the most appropriate PSAP, wherever the call is made.

In March 2017, in co-operation with the European Emergency Number Association (EENA), we organized the second Next Generation 112 (NG112) emergency communications Plugtests™ event. NG112 offers a potential solution to the increasing requirements and demands of content-rich emergency calling. The goal of this Plugtests event was to validate the interoperability and conformity of a variety of solutions on the market, using different scenarios and test cases focused on voice and geo-localization. Planning has begun for a third NG112 Emergency Communications Plugtests event to be held in 2019, with the focus on content-rich emergency calling with existing IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS)/Rich Communications Services (RCS) features such as video calling, instant messaging and file transfer.

We continued to work on a TS and a Technical Report (TR) related to networks dedicated to emergency services. The TS describes the core elements and corresponding technical interfaces for network independent access to emergency services. This work is completed with a TR, also scheduled for publication by 2018, describing the test cases and scenarios for interoperability testing of the core elements for independent access networks. These scenarios include location-based and policy-based emergency call routing, network- or handset-derived caller location as well as legacy, IP, enterprise/campus and IMS-based access networks. 

We completed a new TS providing guidelines for assessing the conformity of eCall in-vehicle system devices with regards to essential performance requirements. eCall is the in-vehicle emergency call service which automatically relays data about an accident from the vehicle to the emergency services. We also revised our high-level application requirements conformance test specification for eCall.

Work in response to European Commission Mandate M/493 on the location enhanced emergency call was completed, with the development of protocol specifications for retrieving and transporting emergency caller location. This service is intended to cover situations where different service providers and network operators must co-operate to determine the location of an emergency caller – such as when a user makes an emergency call using a Voice-over-IP service instead of a conventional mobile or fixed telephone.

SC EMTEL liaises with organizations outside ETSI such as the Telecommunications Standardization sector of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU-T, Study Group 2), the Electronic Communications Committee of the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT ECC) and the Global Standards Collaboration (GSC). SC EMTEL also follows the activities of various fora and consortia, including the Internet Engineering Task Force working group on Emergency Context Resolution with Internet Technologies (IETF-ECRIT).

In this context SC EMTEL participated in a Joint EMTEL – ECC PT ES Workshop October 2017 in Bienne, Switzerland. The purpose of the workshop was to gather the two groups, to present their respective goals and work and to determine potential synergies allowing a complementary development of the works relative to emergency telecommunications. The presence of different stakeholders (regulators, operators, solution providers, emergency services and public safety users) generated a constructive dialogue: a further workshop is planned for the end of 2018 in Sophia Antipolis.