Mobile calls ‘cannot be traced by emergency services’

Mobile calls 'cannot be traced by emergency services'
Photo: Dragan Sasic
SOS Alarm, which handles all emergency telephone calls in Sweden, is not able to trace half of all the calls it receives from mobile phone users.

While around 70 percent of calls to SOS Alarm are now made from mobile phones, only those who subscribe to Telia’s services can be located. Other operators are lacking the positioning technology in their networks, Swedish Radio’s Ekot programme has reported.

“It’s important that we quickly get a location wherever the person is, so that we can send help as fast as possible,” said SOS Alarm’s Nils-Erik Norin to Ekot.

The position of the mobile telephone can be established with the help of the operators’ masts, a system which SOS Alarm has been able to use since the beginning of the year. Telenor is working on its network while Tele2 and Tre have not signed agreements with SOS Alarm.

“It’s an investment which we still haven’t made but which will be sorted out in the autumn,” said Thomas Ekman, sales and marketing director at Tele2, which has 3.5 million mobile subscribers.

According to an Ekot source, the lack of agreement with the other operators is a cost issue. SOS Alarm pays operators for every time a location is made, but how much they pay is a matter of negotiation.