Use Emergency SOS on your Apple Watch

With Emergency SOS, you can quickly and easily call for help and alert your emergency contacts from your Apple Watch.

Here's how it works

When you make a call with Emergency SOS, your Apple Watch automatically calls local emergency services and shares your location with them.*

Apple Watch showing Emergency Call screen

When the call ends, your Apple Watch will send your emergency contacts a text message with your current location, unless you choose to cancel. For a period of time after you've entered SOS mode, your emergency contacts will receive updates when your location changes. Find out how to add emergency contacts.

Emergency SOS requires a mobile connection or Wi-Fi calling with an internet connection from your Apple Watch or nearby iPhone.

In some countries and regions, you may need to choose the emergency service you need. For example, in China mainland you can choose police, fire or ambulance. And if you have Apple Watch Series 5 or later (GPS + Cellular), or Apple Watch SE or later (GPS + Cellular), your watch can also call the local emergency services when you're travelling in other countries or regions.

How to call the emergency services on your Apple Watch

  1. Press and hold your watch's side button (the button below the Digital Crown) until the Emergency Call slider appears.
    Apple Watch showing the Emergency Call slider to start a call
  2. Drag the Emergency Call slider to start the call immediately. Or you can keep holding the side button, then after a countdown your watch will call the emergency services automatically.

Use Crash Detection and Fall Detection to call for help

If you have Apple Watch Series 8 or later, Apple Watch SE (2nd generation) or Apple Watch Ultra or later with the latest version of watchOS, your device can call emergency services and send a message to your emergency contacts when a severe car crash is detected. Find out more about using Crash Detection on Apple Watch to call for help in an accident.

Fall Detection on Apple Watch Series 4 or later and Apple Watch SE or later can connect you to the emergency services when a hard fall is detected. Find out how to use Fall Detection on Apple Watch.

Turn off automatic dialling

You can change your settings so that holding the side button doesn't call the emergency services automatically: 

  1. Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, then tap the My Watch tab.
  2. Tap Emergency SOS.
  3. Turn off Hold Side Button to Dial. 
    iPhone showing the Emergency SOS screen in the Apple Watch app

If you turn off this setting, you can still use the Emergency Call slider to make a call.

End a call that you started accidentally

If you start the Emergency SOS countdown by accident, just release the side button.

If the call has been made, but you don’t need the emergency services, don’t hang up. Wait until a responder answers, then explain that you don’t need help. After that, your watch will ask if you still want to send a text message to your emergency contacts. Tap No if you want to cancel the text message.

Stop sharing your location

After your emergency call has ended, your Apple Watch will remind you every 4 hours that your location is being shared with your emergency contacts. Tap Stop Sharing in the notification to stop sharing your location.

International emergency calling

Apple Watch Series 5 and later (GPS + Cellular), and Apple Watch SE and later (GPS + Cellular), can call the local emergency services when you're in another country or region. When you start an Emergency SOS call while abroad, your watch will connect to the local emergency services, but it may not be able to send your location or a text message to your emergency contacts.

In some countries and regions, international emergency calling works even if you haven't set up a mobile data plan on the watch. Find out which countries and regions are supported.

Just like when you use Emergency SOS in your home country or region, your iPhone needs to be nearby if your Apple Watch isn't a model that offers mobile data connectivity.

* Location sharing with emergency services varies by country and region, and may not be available everywhere.

Published Date: