If you have a serious accident, whether it’s in a car, on a motorbike, or even skiing, you could end up unconscious. When emergency services turn up they might not be able to get important information from you such as allergies to certain medication, requirements for existing medication such as diabetes meds, or previous relevant injuries. Once they’ve stabilised you they will need to try to find out information using ID you are carrying, your licence plate, any other documents with you, and so on.
You could include ICE (in case of emergency) contact details on your iPhone lock screen or your Android lockscreen. In the event that your phone is smashed, there’s another option: a QR code either carried in your wallet, or stuck to your helmet.
There are free apps available to read QR codes, and to create them is free, too – just search Google for websites. A QR code can encode 4296 alphanumeric characters, or if you need non-English characters such as ñ, ¡, ¿ or é then you can encode 2953 characters. However, the size of the QR code matters because the more information it carries, the smaller the dots will be, you will need a higher resolution printer to print it, and a better quality camera to read it. A practical limit for a smallish sticker is around 200 characters. You can include a web address in your QR code but that won’t help if where you crash has zero internet availability.
If you print a QR code out yourself, get it laminated so that it retains its readability. Or you can purchase a sticker from here that contains your medical information and pictures. The sticker looks like this:
The sticker is made using a solvent-free, water-based acrylic adhesive and conforms to British Standard BS 5609, so should be OK to stick to your helmet, but check with the manufacturer first.
There’s only one thing to be aware of in the case of these QR codes, and that is to not divulge too much information as they are readable at any time by anyone.
Darren has owned several companies in the automotive, advertising and education industries. He has run driving theory educational websites since 2010.