DENVER, August 3, 2005 ? Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) today announced it is encouraging customers to enter the number of an emergency contact in their wireless devices under the title ?ICE? (in case of emergency.) The growing practice of entering an ICE number has been encouraged by emergency responders as an easy, simple-to-implement tool in rapidly identifying and assisting those needing emergency care.
?Every wireless phone should have an ICE number entered,? said Fire Chief Daniel Qualman, president of the Colorado State Fire Chiefs Association. ?It helps first responders ? paramedics, fire personnel and police - provide aid should a person not be able to speak for themselves in an emergency situation.?
For teenagers and children, entering an ICE number to contact parents or guardians can deliver additional peace of mind. According to news reports, in 2003 close to 900,000 emergency victims in the United States were unable to provide contact information to emergency room personnel.
The idea originated in England by paramedics frustrated at the valuable lost time, and routinely needed to identify emergency victims carrying only a cell phone. The idea has gained momentum in Europe and the United States as emergency responders and wireless device owners understand the potential life-saving simplicity of the idea.
A single entry, or multiple ICE entries can be created:
ICE ? Dad, 444-123-4567
ICE ? Spouse, 555-123-4567
?I can?t tell you how many times our personnel have come to an accident scene where we need to render aid and the only clue we have about who the person is and what they might need is the cell phone. An ICE entry into the address book will save us time and help us deliver better care,? said Qualman.
?Public safety is core to our mission as a critical infrastructure provider and as a provider of wireless services,? said Dave Heller, Qwest vice president of risk management. ?We encourage all wireless users to create an ?ICE? entry in their wireless phones.?
Qwest will continue working with local emergency responders to heighten awareness of this simple tool including the use of public service announcements.
Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) is a leading provider of high-speed Internet, data, video and voice services. With approximately 40,000 employees, Qwest is committed to the ?Spirit of Service? and providing world-class services that exceed customers? expectations for quality, value and reliability. For more information, please visit the Qwest Web site at www.qwest.com.