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Public transport innovation assists rescue operations in Budapest

Public transport innovation assists rescue operations in Budapest

“Waiting for an ambulance” message displayed in vehicles and information boards guides paramedics to the scene of the emergency

The Budapest Transport Centre (BKK) has introduced an extremely useful innovation to assist the work of the National Ambulance Service (OMSZ) in its rescue and patient transport operations. Thanks to the inscription “Waiting for an ambulance” flashing on the external display of public transport vehicles, ambulances in the Hungarian capital can now find their destination more easily.

"In the event of a traffic accident or passenger incident, the text “Waiting for the Ambulance” can be displayed on the vehicle's external display, so ambulances can find the affected vehicle more easily and quickly at the scene of the emergency or at a busy terminus," said a BKK spokesman.

When the text “Ambulance Waiting” is selected by the driver, the route number is deleted from the vehicle display and the emergency inscription is displayed on all passenger information surfaces, including vehicle displays, information displays at stations and stops, and trip planners. BKK has to call ambulances to its vehicles almost a thousand times a year, as 2-3 passenger cases a day need medical care.

Budapest public transport vehicles provide information not only with captions but also with sound. Pre-recorded messages, for example, encourage passengers to wear proper masks; indicate that the vehicle cannot stop; that the air conditioning is working; or warn that the doors are closing.

Traffic controllers trained in giving first aid

Apart from drivers, BKK traffic controllers are also instrumental in assisting paramedics in their routine work, including giving first aid. In addition to the BKK FUTÁR centre in Szabó Ervin tér, there are defibrillators installed in two traffic control cars, which can be used by properly trained BKK personnel.

"Every little help in the life-saving process is invaluable. The informative sign can not only guide ambulances, but also draw the attention of other people, including health professionals, to the scene of the emergency, so help can be administered even faster," said Pál Győrfi, spokesman for the National Ambulance Service, quoted by the BKK website.

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