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Woman uses Apple Watch’s SOS feature to call 911 after being struck by a drunk driver

Apple Watch SOS

It almost sounds bizarre to say, but the Apple Watch has helped save a number of lives since its release more than two years ago. Just about four months ago, for example, an Apple Watch owner went to the doctor after the device detected an abnormally high heart rate. Upon further examination, the man was found to have a pulmonary embolism, a serious condition that manifests when a blood clot appears in the lungs. The man quickly received proper medical care and, in the process, avoided what could have very well been a fatal outcome.

More recently, the SOS feature on the Apple Watch helped a woman named Kacie Anderson — who was traveling with her 9-month old child — call for help after her car was blindsided by a drunk driver. The accident occurred late last year but was only recently brought to light via Shape.

Here’s how it all went down.

In the aftermath of the accident, Anderson’s iPhone was completely out of reach. Thinking quickly, Anderson instead used the SOS feature on the Apple Watch to call 911. Incidentally, the LTE enabled Apple Watch is capable of making emergency calls even without a connected iPhone or carrier plan.

“The moment he hit us everything inside the car went airborne,” Anderson told Shape. “My face took a horrible blow to the steering wheel, headrest, back to the steering wheel, and then to the window. I blacked out for about a minute and could not see. My eyes were wide open but all I saw was black.

“My hands flew around to feel for my phone,” Anderson added, “and then I realized I had my watch on and commanded it to call 911.”

Not too long after, an ambulance arrived on the scene whereupon medical personnel extracted Anderson and her child from the car and promptly took them to the hospital. Thankfully, Anderson’s son only experienced minor scrapes and bruises. Anderson herself, however, suffered a concussion and ruptured muscles in her neck.

All that said, Anderson said she felt “blessed” to have been wearing her Apple Watch at the time of the accident.

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large for over 15 years. A life long Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW. When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.