Get help in an emergency using your Pixel phone

Use the Personal Safety app to save and share your emergency information. Your phone can contact emergency services automatically in some countries and with certain carriers.

Important: Some of these steps work only on Android 10 and up. Learn how to check your Android version.

Prepare for an emergency

Important: Anyone who picks up your phone can view your lock screen message and emergency information with your phone locked. You can turn off this setting in the Safety app.

Use the Personal Safety app

The Safety app will gradually come to all Pixel phones and will be downloaded automatically on Pixel 4 and later. The app will show as the Personal Safety app in the Play Store and in Settings. But in your list of apps, it only shows as the Safety app.

Add the Safety app on a Pixel 3a or earlier

  1. Check that you have the latest Android software. Make sure your software version starts with "QQ3." If it starts with a different version, update your system until you reach the version that starts with "QQ3." Learn how to check your Android version
  2. Go to Settings  and then About phone.
  3. Tap Emergency information.
  4. In the banner at the top of the screen, tap Update.

If you don’t notice the banner:

  1. Check if the Safety app icon is already on your phone and that it's updated to the latest version in the Play Store
  2. If you recently updated to the latest Android software, wait 24 hours and then restart your Pixel. Make sure your software version starts with "QQ3." If it starts with a different version, update your system until you reach the version that starts with "QQ3." Learn how to check your Android version
  3. Then try the steps in the section above to add the Safety app again.

What you can do 

  • Whether you have the safety app or not for Pixel 3a or earlier: You can sign in with your Google Account, add emergency contacts, and list medical Information with or without the Safety app.
  • If you have the Safety app already: You can use emergency sharing, safety check, crisis alerts, and car crash detection. Car crash detection is available on Pixel 3 and later.

What you need 

The Safety app requires Location Services and permissions to be turned on. Location sharing is only available in certain countries and for some user types. Learn more about location sharing.

You can share your real-time location with others from your devices through location sharing. When you share your location with someone, that person can view your name, photo, and real-time location across Google products, including Google Maps. Your shared location information could include:

  • Your current or previous locations.
  • Your current activities, like driving or walking.
  • Your device specifics, like battery life or GPS connections.
  • Your places, like home, work, or destinations.
Add emergency info to the Personal Safety app

You can add a link to personal emergency info to your phone's lock screen, like your blood type, allergies, and medications.

  1. Open your phone's Safety app  .
  2. If asked, sign in to your Google Account.
  3. Tap Settings .
  4. Add your emergency information.
    • For Medical information:
      • Tap Medical information.
      • To add information like allergies or medications, tap the item in the list you'd like to update.
    • For Emergency contacts:
      • Tap Settings  and then Emergency contacts and then Add contact and then Tap on the existing contact you would like to add.

Tips:

  • To show your emergency info when your screen is locked, tap Show when device is locked And then Show when locked
  • Set up a SIM card or eSIM with your phone. Otherwise, your phone can’t text your emergency contact later. Learn how to insert a SIM card.
  • If you don't have the Safety app on you phone, learn how to add the app.
Turn on car crash detection (Pixel 3 & later)

If your phone detects you’ve been in a severe car crash, it can call emergency services automatically, like 911 in the US, and share your location. Learn more about how car crash detection works.

Car crash detection is available in English on your Pixel 3 and later in the US, UK, and Australia. 

Important: Due to a technical issue, car crash detection may seem like it’s available on Pixel 1, 2, and 3a devices temporarily, but the feature isn't available on these devices. Car crash detection is only available on Pixel 3 and later.

  1. If you haven’t yet, add a SIM to your phone. Learn how to add a SIM
  2. Open the Safety app  .
  3. Tap Settings  .
  4. Under “Detection & alerts,” tap Car crash detection.
  5. Turn on Car crash detection.
    • When asked to share your location, tap Allow all the time
    • When asked to share your microphone and physical activity, tap Allow.

How car crash detection works

Your Pixel 3 and later can use information, like your phone’s location, motion sensors, and nearby sounds to detect a possible severe car crash. Car crash detection requires location, physical activity, and microphone permissions to work. If your phone determines you got in a severe car crash and calls emergency services, your approximate location and car crash data may be transmitted to emergency services by Android’s Emergency Location Service. Learn how to manage your Pixel phone’s permissions.

Your phone may not be able to detect all crashes. High impact activities could also trigger calls to emergency services. Your Pixel phone might not be able to call emergency services in some cases, like when your phone is connected to a weak mobile network or in an ongoing call.

Tap here to see an interactive tutorial

Put a message on your lock screen
  1. Open your phone's Settings app.
  2. Tap Display And then Advanced And then Lock screen display And then Lock screen message.
  3. Enter your message, like info that would help someone return your phone if you lost it.
  4. Tap Save.
Control emergency broadcast notifications
You can use this setting to manage certain emergency messages, like disaster warnings, threat notifications, and AMBER alerts.

You can turn alert types on or off, view past alerts, and control sound and vibration.

  1. Open your phone's Settings app.
  2. Tap Apps & notifications and then Advanced and then Wireless emergency alerts.
  3. Choose how often you want to receive alerts and which settings you want to turn on.

Get help during an emergency

Get help after a car crash (Pixel 3 & later)

Important: Car crash detection doesn’t work in Airplane mode, or when Battery Saver is on. Car crash detection only works in the country of your phone's SIM, not when roaming.

If your phone determines you got in a severe car crash, and if you turned on car crash detection previously:

  1. Your phone will vibrate, ring loudly, and ask if you need help, both aloud and on your phone screen.
  2. Respond within 60 seconds:
    • To call emergency services: Say “Emergency” or tap the emergency button twice. Your phone will turn on speakerphone automatically. Learn more about emergency calling.
    • To not call: Say “Cancel” or tap I am ok. Your phone won’t make an emergency call.
    • If you don’t respond: Your phone will automatically turn on speakerphone, try to call emergency services, say that a car crash happened, and share your device’s approximate location.
      The message will repeat, but you can speak over it. To stop the message and stay on the call, tap Cancel. Learn more about emergency calling.
Find emergency info
  1. On a locked screen, swipe up.
  2. Tap Emergency And then Emergency information.
  3. When Emergency information flashes, tap it again.
Send your location automatically

To help first responders find you quickly, dial an emergency number. For example, dial 911 in the US or 112 in Europe.

If Android Emergency Location Service (ELS) works in your country and on your mobile network, and you haven't turned off ELS, your phone will automatically send its location using ELS. If ELS is off, your mobile carrier may still send the device's location during an emergency call or text.

Turn Emergency Location Service on or off

  1. Open your phone's Settings app.
  2. Tap Location
  3. Tap Advanced And then Emergency Location Service or Google Emergency Location Service.
  4. Turn Emergency Location Service on or off.

How Emergency Location Service works 

Your phone uses Emergency Location Services (ELS) only when you call or text an emergency number. During the call, ELS may use Google Location Services and other information to get the most accurate location for your phone. If you opt in to share this data during emergencies, ELS may also send additional contextual information, like the language your device is configured with.

Your phone sends this data to authorized emergency partners to help emergency services locate and help you. Your data is sent directly from your phone to emergency partners, not through Google.

After you complete a call or text during which ELS is active, your phone sends usage and analytics data to Google to analyze how well ELS is working. This information doesn't identify you, and Google doesn't use it to identify you.

When you send your location with ELS, the process is different from when you share your location with Google Maps. Learn about Location Sharing with Google Maps.

Share your location with your emergency contacts

You can let your emergency contacts view your location and receive updates about where you are and your battery percentage. You must give Google Maps permission to access your background location.

Tip: If location sharing is unavailable in your country, a message will appear in the Safety app.

To use emergency sharing, you’ll need:

  • At least one emergency contact
  • The most recent version of the Google Maps app
  • To sign in to Google Maps with physical activity and location permissions turned on
  • Internet connection with Location Services turned on

Start emergency sharing

  1. Open the Safety app  .
  2. Tap Emergency sharing.
  3. Select who you want to share your real-time location with and add an optional message.
  4. Tap Share.
  5. Tap the notification banner to view the details of your Emergency sharing.

Stop emergency sharing

  1. Open the Safety app  .
  2. Tap the emergency sharing information.
  3. Tap Stop. You can add a note to explain why you’ve ended the emergency share.

Tip: Emergency sharing will automatically end after 24 hours.

Tap here to see an interactive tutorial
Fix location sharing issues

Sometimes, location sharing might not be available because of an issue with Google Maps. Here are some ways to try to fix the problem:

  • Update Google Maps in the Play Store
  • Force quit Google Maps and restart it
  • Open Google Maps and make sure you can start a location share.
Schedule a safety check

If you want your phone to check on you and let your emergency contacts know if anything is wrong, you can schedule a safety check. For example, you can use a safety check when you walk in an unfamiliar area or go to a party. You’ll need to give background location permissions to Google Maps and the Safety app.

  1. Open the Safety app  .
  2. Tap Safety check.
  3. Select your Reason and Duration. You can set the check for 15 minutes to 8 hours into the future.
  4. Then, tap Next.
  5. Select your contacts.
  6. Tap Turn on.

If you turn on notifications for your emergency contacts, they’ll be notified when a safety check is scheduled and has ended.

Mark yourself safe

When it’s time to check in, you’ll get an alert for 60 seconds before emergency sharing begins. If you mark yourself safe, the emergency share will be canceled. You can stop the safety check at any time through the notification. If you don’t choose one of the options within 60 seconds, emergency sharing will begin.

  1. When you get the notification, choose one of the options:
    • I’m OK. Don’t Share.
    • Start sharing now. This will end future safety checks.
    • Call 911.
  2. If your phone is locked, you may need to unlock it.

If your phone turns off or loses signal, the safety check will remain active and will start an emergency share with your last known location at the scheduled check-in time.

How emergency contacts are notified

When an emergency share starts, Google will send the emergency contacts a text with your name, a link to view your real-time location in Google Maps, remaining battery percentage, and a message, if you provided one.

When a safety check starts, if you turn on notifications for your emergency contacts, they’ll get a text with your name, the duration of your safety check, and a reason, if you provided one. Later, if you start an emergency share manually or can’t mark yourself as OK when your phone checks in, Google will share a link to view your real-time location in Google Maps and remaining battery percentage.

Emergency sharing and safety check stop when you stop it or mark yourself safe. When they stop, Google will send another text to your contacts to let them know it ended.

Get crisis alerts
When you opt in to crisis alerts, you’ll be notified in the Safety app about public emergencies or local crises, like natural disasters. Crisis alert notifications include a link to the Safety app’s homepage where you can find extra information about the event.

Crisis alerts are available in all countries and languages. If your phone is set to a different language other than the local language, the alert may show up in the official language of your current location instead of your set language.

Turn crisis alerts on or off

  1. Open the Safety app  .
  2. Tap Settings  and then Crisis alerts.
  3. Turn Crisis alerts on or off.

How Google sends crisis alerts

Google manages crisis information from official local sources. If a crisis is posted that affects your location, the Safety app will notify you. Google posts crisis alerts based on various factors, like internet connectivity in the affected area, the availability of official content from governments and other authoritative organizations, and the impact on the ground. Alerts are typically available in the primary languages of the affected area and English. Learn more about crisis alerts.

Make assisted emergency calls 

When you dial an emergency number on a Pixel phone (like 911 in the US), you'll find an "Emergency Number" screen with info and features to help during the emergency.

  • Most emergency operators should know these features (you can revert to a normal voice call)
  • No internet connection needed
  • No set-up needed
Detect location during an emergency

You can read your location from your screen to the emergency operator. Depending what your phone can detect, you could find:

  • Full street address
  • Plus code (like, "CWC8+JH")
    • Plus codes are an easy way to state longitude and latitude.
    • Emergency operators recognize them.
  • Longitude and latitude (like, "37.4216105,-122.0857449")
  • Map
Alert an operator silently (US, UK & AU only)

To alert an emergency operator without speaking, tap either Medical, Fire, or Police.
Your phone will stay silent. But the emergency operator will hear:

  • That this is an automated voice service
  • The kind of help you need
  • Your location
  • Your name (if available from your set-up Emergency Information or other on-device sources)

Learn how to put emergency info on your lock screen.

Find out about earthquakes in your area

Your phone can detect earthquakes in your area. To learn more about nearby earthquakes, open Google search and search for "earthquake in [your city or region]".

To stop your phone from contributing to earthquake detection, turn off Google Location Accuracy.

Get alerts for nearby earthquakes (California only)

Your phone can send you alerts about nearby earthquakes of magnitude 4.5 and above. Your phone uses your approximate location to send info about an earthquake’s magnitude and distance from where you are. These earthquake alerts are based on data from ShakeAlert.

To turn earthquake alerts on or off:

  1. Open your phone’s Settings app.
  2. Tap Location And then Advanced And then Earthquake alerts. 
  3. Turn Earthquake alerts on or off.

You might not get alerts for all earthquakes in your area. Occasionally, you may get an alert but not feel an earthquake in your location.

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