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By 2 October 2019 | Categories: news

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As part of Deaf awareness month, Vodacom has extended a helping hand through the launch of the Vodacom 112 Emergency Service App that enables persons with communication barriers (Deaf, hard of hearing, speech impaired, hearing impaired, deafblind) persons to contact emergency services when they need help. 

The free Emergency Service App, which the company explains has been designed especially for persons who experience communication barriers, enables deaf users to contact the ER24 emergency contact centre 24 hours, 365 days a year. Users can request emergency services  such as fire, police, sea rescue, traffic and ambulance services which could assist to save their own lives, the lives of their loved ones and other people in need.

In order to get the service, deaf users need to download the Vodacom 112 Emergency Service App from the Google Playstore and Apple iStore and register their mobile number.

“As an organisation that aims to include all members of society through our different product suites, we realised that there’s a gap in the market. Most emergency services are predominantly accessible via voice calls. We recognised that this was a barrier for the deaf and hearing impaired market segments, hence the birth of this app”, explained Karen Smit - Principal Specialist: Specific Needs.

The introduction of this Emergency App service comes at the back of an SMS Emergency Service that Vodacom launched a year ago. The app provides another channel for deaf and hearing impaired persons to contact emergency services from their mobile devices. 

“As an organisation committed to ensuring that millions of South Africans are connected for a better future, it became evident that we needed to address the needs of those that are vulnerable. As a brand that believes in inclusion for all, Vodacom works hard to promote an inclusive digital society, regardless of age, income or disability,” added Smit. “We will continue to launch accessible products that offer solutions to those that need them most,” she concluded.

For more information email specificneedsqueries@vodacom.co.za or call 082 12580 free from a Vodacom phone. Information and a video clip of the service can be viewed on Vodacom’s website here.

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