OnStar is proud to partner with the first responders who keep us safe

Working together for safer communities. Public Safety Professionals do so much to keep us safe. OnStar is proud to work with these tireless protectors every day. We provide them with services that help them do their job — and help make American roads and communities safer. Here you can learn how OnStar works with Public Safety Professionals, see their stories and learn how OnStar can help in an emergency.

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In-vehicle emergencies

Before contacting the Public Safety Answering Point, the highly trained Advisors will verify that only calls requiring public safety assistance are routed to your agency.

Connection to the appropriate Public Safety Agency/In-Vehicle Emergency Situations (U.S. only).

  1. Vehicle occupant presses the red OnStar Emergency button in the vehicle and connects to OnStar.
  2. Occupant will get priority connection to a live OnStar Advisor to determine emergency details.  
  3. If appropriate, OnStar Advisor places a call to the PSAP with jurisdiction using the existing 911 PSAP trunk, if available, or other high-priority access line.
  4. When a 911 PSAP trunk is used, the following information should be displayed on the PSAP or CAD system (depending on system limitations):
    • Calling party: OnStar Call Center
    • Call-back number:  1-866-866-5006 (the dedicated PSAP-only callback number) 
    • The vehicle’s GPS location (X/Y or latitude/longitude coordinate data)
  5. The OnStar Advisor can establish 3-way voice conferencing with the vehicle occupants.

In-Vehicle Emergency Situations (Canada)

  1. Vehicle occupant presses the red OnStar Emergency button in the vehicle and connects to OnStar.
  2. Occupant will get priority connection to a live OnStar Advisor to determine emergency needs.  
  3. If appropriate, OnStar Advisor places a call to the PSAP with jurisdiction using the highest priority access line available.
  4. The Advisor will verbally relay the relevant call information including location based on street names, cross streets, X/Y coordinate data or description of aerial imagery, if appropriate.
  5. The OnStar Advisor can establish 3-way voice conferencing with the vehicle occupants.

 

In-vehicle non-emergency calls requiring PSAP response (U.S. and Canada)

  1. Vehicle occupant presses the red OnStar emergency button in the vehicle and connects to OnStar.
  2. Occupant gets priority connection to a live OnStar Advisor to determine emergency needs.  
  3. Non-emergency situations that need public safety assistance are routed to the center’s 10-digit telephone number.
  4. The Advisor will verbally relay the relevant call information, including location, based on street names, cross streets, X/Y coordinate data or description of aerial imagery, if appropriate.
  5. The OnStar Advisor can establish 3-way voice conferencing with the vehicle occupants.

 

Good Samaritan calls

OnStar receives thousands of calls each month from “Good Samaritan” drivers who report crashes, road hazards or criminal activity. OnStar provides this information, as appropriate, to 911 centers so that emergency help can be sent.

  1. The vehicle occupant calls the OnStar contact center to report a hazardous situation or an emergency situation involving someone else.
  2. The Advisor receives the vehicle’s GPS vehicle location at the moment the caller connects to the Advisor.
  3. OnStar screens the call to determine appropriate handling and to minimize the number of duplicate calls delivered to the PSAP for the incident.
  4. If appropriate, the OnStar Advisor may provide emergency medical dispatch instructions and/or request police, fire and/or medical support be sent right away by contacting the appropriate 911 jurisdiction.
  5. Stay on the line until help arrives at the scene.
  6. The Good Samaritan may choose to stay on the line to speak directly to emergency services personnel.

 

Automatic Crash Response

All OnStar-equipped vehicles with a paid service plan are equipped with Automatic Crash Response. In moderate to severe crashes, even without air bag deployment, an automatic alert can be immediately sent to OnStar. On most newer OnStar-equipped vehicles, however, built in crash sensors can automatically alert OnStar in the event of a moderate to severe crash even if the air bags do not deploy.   

  1. In most crashes, built-in sensors in the vehicle can automatically send an alert to OnStar.
  2. A live Advisor can then be connected into the vehicle to determine if the occupants are okay.
  3. Injury Severity Prediction helps predict if there is a high probability of severe injury.
  4. Even if the occupants are hurt and can’t respond, an Advisor can request emergency help be sent to the vehicle’s location using GPS technology.
  5. In most crashes, an advisor can relay critical crash data (air bag status, delta V, direction of impact, if there were multiples impacts and/or if the vehicle rolled over) to emergency dispatchers to help determine dispatch and transport decisions.
  6. The Advisor stays on the line with the occupants until emergency help arrives at the scene.
  7. A certified EMD Advisor provides MPDS protocol instructions to occupants in the critical first minutes after a crash.
  8. The Advisor can send a remote signal to sound the horn and flash the lights in order to help first responders locate the vehicle.

 

Criminal investigations

This section describes what OnStar requires to disclose the following categories of OnStar Member (“Member”) information in the United States. In accordance with our terms, conditions, policies, and applicable law, OnStar will review each request individually to assess the circumstances and the nature of the request before providing any Member information.

VEHICLE LOCATION AND CONTENTS OF ONSTAR COMMUNICATIONS

If available, OnStar may supply vehicle location and contents of communications subject to: 

  • A warrant or court order supported by a showing of probable cause; or
  • Member consent.

BASIC MEMBER INFORMATION (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO: NAME, ADDRESS, AND LENGTH OF SERVICE)

If available, OnStar may supply basic member information subject to:

  • A warrant or comparable court order supported by probable cause;
  • A court order issued under 18 U.S.C. Section 2703(d);
  • An administrative, grand jury, or trial subpoena; or
  • Member consent.

OTHER INFORMATION THAT DOES NOT INVOLVE THE CONTENTS OF COMMUNICATIONS (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO: DATES OF ALERTS, VEHICLE INFORMATION, CRASH DATA, AND LICENSE PLATE NUMBERS)

If available, OnStar may supply other information subject to:

  • A warrant or comparable court order supported by a showing of probable cause;
  • A court order issued under 18 U.S.C. Section 2703(d); or
  • Member consent.

REQUESTS FOR INTERCEPTIONS OR REAL-TIME ACCESS TO CALL-IDENTIFYING INFORMATION

OnStar is not able to facilitate interceptions of communications or real-time access to call-identifying information.  In the United States, such requests should be directed to AT&T.

How to Request Information

To the extent OnStar is able to provide information as instructed above, you may serve a request for information through OnStar’s registered agent, Corporation Service Company (CSC). You can obtain a local address for CSC by calling 1-888-690-2882.

For proper routing, please address requests to:

  • OnStar LLC at the address provided by CSC [To: OnStar LLC, C/O CSC]

When you submit a request, please include:

  • The date and time of the relevant occurrence(s);
  • A description of the information you are seeking (e.g., vehicle location or account records); and
  • The associated legal basis for your request.

To help OnStar comply with your request, please provide the following information (if available):

  • Full name; 
  • Mailing address including ZIP code;
  • Phone number;
  • OnStar account number;
  • Vehicle identification number (including year, make, and model); and
  • OnStar hands free calling number.

If your request involves an OnStar Good Samaritan call, please provide:

  • The date of the call; and
  • The OnStar case number provided to 9-1-1 dispatch by OnStar.

Please note that OnStar does not create or provide transcripts of audio recordings, and OnStar cannot guarantee that any audio recording was taken at the time of a call or that it can be retrieved, given OnStar’s limited retention of such audio recordings. OnStar may, upon written request, be able to preserve available information until you can obtain appropriate legal process.

Consistent with 18 USC 2702(b)(8), (c)(4), OnStar may act in good faith when OnStar believes that an emergency involving danger of death or serious physical injury to any person requires disclosure without delay of communications relating to the emergency.

 

Crisis assistance

OnStar’s Command Center monitors severe weather and disaster activity across North America — 24/7 so that we are prepared to assist our customers and Public Safety at a moment’s notice.

OnStar Crisis Assist is a service that gives OnStar customers access to all available OnStar services in the event of a weather emergency, natural disaster, power outage, hazardous material spill and other such man-made or natural crises.

In the event of a crisis, customers get access to OnStar services at no additional cost. By using GPS technology, Advisors can provide a vehicle’s exact location to emergency responders.

  1. An OnStar Advisor receives a call from a vehicle occupant involving a crisis situation (i.e., severe weather, hazardous situation).
  2. OnStar Advisors are notified of such activity if occurring in the vicinity of the vehicle’s location
  3. The Command Center works to gather relevant situational information from responding organizations and relevant sources about the specific events which is shared with our OnStar Advisors to facilitate their support of our customers in need.
  4. Advisors make available all OnStar services as needed to impacted customers regardless of their service plan.  These include services such as situational information, assisting with evacuation or alternate routes, identifying available hotels and making hotel reservations, finding open shelters, connecting vehicle occupants to emergency services or loved ones, etc.

 

Missing persons

There may be emergency situations not involving a stolen vehicle where Public Safety officials request OnStar assistance in determining vehicle location involving a missing person.

As a public service, OnStar will attempt to locate a vehicle to assist law enforcement in finding a missing person.

OnStar requires a missing person report be initiated or filed in these situations for OnStar to work with Law Enforcement to help locate the vehicle of the missing person.

Law Enforcement must also confirm to OnStar that the location information is not being sought for any other purpose.  If an individual is missing, but is also under criminal investigation, law enforcement must provide a court order before OnStar can assist.

In a “life-threatening” situation such as a carjacking or kidnapping, however, OnStar immediately contacts Law Enforcement and begins attempting to locate the vehicle.

Additional information can be obtained by contacting our dedicated public safety number 866-866-5006.

 

Stolen Vehicle Assistance

OnStar Stolen Vehicle Assistance continues to have the most comprehensive in-vehicle security service available.  With industry-leading technologies such as Remote Ignition Block and Stolen Vehicle Slowdown, public safety can rely on OnStar as a partner to assist with the quick and safe recovery of stolen vehicles.

There are two typical scenarios for initiating Stolen Vehicle Assistance depending on which party contacts OnStar.

  1. A vehicle owner contacts OnStar after a vehicle has been stolen. OnStar then links the vehicle owner with law enforcement to initiate a report.
  2. In the second scenario, law enforcement contacts OnStar after the vehicle owner reports the vehicle as stolen.  OnStar then verifies the report before providing a location to law enforcement.

OnStar can pinpoint the location of the stolen vehicle using GPS technology and aerial imagery, then provides this information to authorities.

An OnStar Advisor can send a remote ignition block signal to the stolen vehicle, preventing it from being restarted once the engine has been turned off.

If the vehicle is still running, the Advisor can activate Stolen Vehicle Slowdown once law enforcement has clear sight of the vehicle and indicates conditions are appropriate.  The stolen vehicle will automatically slow down to an idle speed with steering and braking functions intact. 

Once the vehicle has been recovered by law enforcement, an Advisor may need to send a signal to restore the vehicle's services so it can resume normal driving operations.

 

Remote door unlocks

If a Member is locked out of his or her vehicle, they can take the following steps:

  1. Call 1.888.4ONSTAR (1.888.466.7827).
  2. Verify account information.
  3. A remote signal is sent to the vehicle that usually unlocks the doors.
  4. This service is available anytime, day or night, with no limits on how often a Member can call for help.

Members may also use their vehicle's mobile app to remotely unlock to doors.

 

Public Safety Training


Interested in learning how OnStar can help first responders in emergency events? OnStar Public Safety Training is available at no cost. This hour-long self-paced interactive contains a course completion certificate and has been approved for continuing education credit. Contact us to inquire about details at emergencyservices@onstar.com.

BEGIN TRAINING


First Responder Stories


Experience a day in the life of a first responder. This exclusive content allows you to hear first-hand accounts of how public safety professionals approach their work - and the many ways they partner with OnStar.

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