Use Emergency SOS on your Apple Watch

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

Here's how it works

When you make a call with SOS, your Apple Watch automatically calls the local emergency number. In some countries and regions, you might need to choose the service that you need. For example, in China you can choose police, fire, or ambulance. 

Connecting Emergency Services screen on Apple Watch

You can also add emergency contacts. After an emergency call ends, your Apple Watch alerts your emergency contacts with a text message, unless you choose to cancel. Your Apple Watch sends them your current location, and, for a period of time after you enter SOS mode, it sends your emergency contacts updates when your location changes. 

Call emergency services

To use SOS, your iPhone needs to be nearby. If your iPhone isn't nearby, your Apple Watch needs to be connected to a known Wi-Fi network and you must set up Wi-Fi Calling. On cellular models of Apple Watch, you can also use a cellular connection.

Here's how to make a call: 

  1. Press and hold the side button on your watch until the Emergency SOS slider appears.
    Emergency SOS slider on Apple Watch.
  2. Continue to hold down the side button. Wait for a countdown to begin and an alert to sound. You can also drag the Emergency SOS slider.
  3. When the countdown ends, your watch automatically calls emergency services.

After the call ends, your Apple Watch sends your emergency contacts a text message with your current location, unless you choose to cancel. If Location Services is off, it will temporarily turn on. If your location changes, your contacts will get an update, and you'll get a notification about 10 minutes later. 

Stop sharing your location

When your location is being shared, you'll get a reminder to stop every 4 hours for 24 hours. To stop the updates, select Stop Sharing in the notification. 

End a call

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

If you start an emergency call by accident, firmly press the display, then tap End Call.

End Call option on Apple Watch.

Medical ID screen on iPhone showing allergies, medications, blood type, and more.

Add or remove contacts

You can add emergency contacts from the Health app on your iPhone:

  1. Open the Health app and tap the Medical ID tab. 
  2. Tap Edit, then scroll to Emergency Contacts.
  3. Tap the plus icon to add an emergency contact.
  4. Tap a contact, then add their relationship. 
  5. Tap Done to save your changes. 

Here's how to remove emergency contacts: 

  1. Open the Health app and tap the Medical ID tab. 
  2. Tap Edit, then scroll to Emergency Contacts. 
  3. Tap the minus icon next to a contact, then tap Delete.
  4. Tap Done to save your changes. 

You can't set emergency services as an emergency contact. 

Turn off automatic dialing

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

  1. Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and tap the My Watch tab.
  2. Tap Emergency SOS.
  3. Turn off Hold Side Button. 
    Emergency SOS screen on iPhone showing Emily Parker as an emergency contact.

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

Set up other emergency features

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