New technology will assist public safety officials in OnStar stolen vehicle cases, help save lives
General Motors (GM) and OnStar today launched Stolen Vehicle Slowdown
on more than 1 million model year 2009 GM vehicles in the U.S. and
Canada. Stolen Vehicle Slowdown is the latest enhancement to OnStar’s
Stolen Vehicle Assistance service and enables OnStar to further help
law enforcement in the recovery of subscribers’ stolen vehicles, while
helping to reduce fatalities and injuries resulting from police chases.
Working with law enforcement and utilizing its unique built-in
technology, OnStar can remotely send a signal that interacts with the
vehicle’s engine, gradually slowing it down, aiding in a safe recovery.
“No other automaker provides its’ customers
the peace of mind that OnStar Stolen Vehicle Slowdown does,” said Chet
Huber, OnStar president. “Our subscribers have told us they don’t want
their vehicle to be the instrument of harm.”
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics show 30,000
police chases occur each year, resulting in approximately 300 deaths.
Stolen Vehicle Slowdown will help take high speed pursuits out of the
equation, as well as the probability that a subscriber’s stolen vehicle
will be crashed during a chase.
Stolen Vehicle Slowdown, there were only three ways to stop a police
chase; the officer elects to terminate the chase, the vehicle being
pursued decides to stop or in the worse case scenario there is a
crash,” said David Hiller, national vice president, Fraternal Order of
Police. “With OnStar Stolen Vehicle Slowdown we now have an additional
and obviously far safer method. We congratulate GM and OnStar for
working with law enforcement as they developed this product.”
GM will integrate the capability on more than 1 million model year 2009
vehicles through OnStar’s newest generation of hardware, Generation 8.
Chevrolet, GM’s largest division, will lead the effort with over half a
million Chevrolet vehicles equipped with Stolen Vehicle Slowdown.
How Stolen Vehicle Slowdown Works
Once an OnStar subscriber has reported a stolen vehicle to law
enforcement, he or she can call OnStar and request Stolen Vehicle
Assistance. An OnStar advisor will use advanced Global Positioning
Satellite technology to pinpoint the exact location of the stolen
vehicle which will be provided only to law enforcement.
Once law enforcement officials have the stolen vehicle in a clear line
of sight to know conditions are safe, they can request that the OnStar
advisor remotely slow it down. OnStar will then send a signal to the
vehicle’s engine, reducing engine power and gradually slowing the
vehicle to idle speed while all other vehicle systems remain fully
operational including power steering and brakes.
Because involvement from local law enforcement agencies is key to the
safe execution of Stolen Vehicle Slowdown, OnStar conducted a 25-city
public safety outreach tour across the United States to familiarize the
public safety community with this revolutionary service, and let them
experience the technology first-hand.
Subscribers who prefer not to have the Stolen Vehicle Slowdown
capability on their vehicle may contact OnStar to opt out of the
service at any time. The rest of their OnStar services will remain
active and unaffected.
OnStar has offered
Stolen Vehicle Assistance services with GPS location since 1996. It now
receives approximately 700 Stolen Vehicle Assistance requests from
subscribers each month, and has helped in 38,000 requests over the past
twelve years. OnStar’s suite of services also includes Automatic Crash
Response, Emergency Services, Remote Door Unlock, Roadside Assistance,
Crisis Assist, OnStar Turn-by-Turn Navigation, Hands Free Calling and
OnStar Vehicle Diagnostics.