On 112 Day 2024, the European Emergency Number Association (EENA 112) has released a report, delving into how different European countries can improve in terms of their emergency response, as well as their strengths and adherence to mandatory EU legislation.

Europe’s universal emergency number, 112, is a critical lifeline, connecting citizens to lifesaving services in moments of dire need. Despite its vital role, public awareness and understanding of 112 vary significantly across the continent. This disparity not only reflects the diverse history of emergency services in Europe and the respective national numbers, but also highlights a crucial gap in emergency preparedness.

Every year on 11th February, Europe observes a vital occasion — 112 Day. This day is dedicated to raising awareness about 112, the pan-European emergency number available free of charge, 24/7, across Europe. Only 41% of European citizens know that 112 is the European emergency number, according to the latest Barometer report on 112. 112 Day is more than just a reminder of the number itself; it’s a day that highlights the importance of efficient emergency response systems and the work of emergency service professionals. Various events, campaigns, and educational programs across Europe aim to inform the public about the proper use of 112 and to emphasize its role in saving lives: collated and shared by EENA on their website.

In recent years, the day has also focused on how well individual countries adhere to EU regulations and the strength of their emergency responses. EENA’s report aims to foster a deeper understanding of the complexities and challenges faced in aligning national emergency systems with EU standards, and how these efforts impact overall public safety. In a succinct one-page format, the report offers insights into how countries can enhance both the efficiency of their emergency services and the public’s ability to access these essential resources effectively.

EENA’s report highlights the importance of keeping track of where individual countries are with their emergency communications implementation. In times of crisis, such as natural disasters, terrorist attacks, or other emergencies, the ability to communicate with the public rapidly and effectively can be the difference between life and death. Efficient public warning systems enable authorities to quickly disseminate vital information, guide the public to safety, and manage resources more effectively.

Ultimately, these measures affect lives. Awareness campaigns like those for 112 are vital for ensuring that the public knows how to respond in an emergency. The effectiveness of an emergency service is not just determined by its technological capabilities, but also by public awareness and understanding of how and when to use it. Regularly assessing and promoting awareness of emergency numbers ensures that in times of crisis, citizens can quickly access the help they need.

The report is based on information from different publications and is intended to provide recommendations to countries. You can find EENA’s 112 Day report here.