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

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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 may require from law enforcement or other government entities upon receiving a request to disclose or provide access to information. OnStar will review each request, including requests related to national security in light of the circumstances and the nature of the request OnStar receives.

LIVE VEHICLE LOCATION (i.e., where a vehicle is now)

If the information is available, OnStar may supply live vehicle location information subject to: A warrant or comparable court order supported by probable cause.

HISTORICAL VEHICLE LOCATION

If the information is available, OnStar may supply historical vehicle location subject to:

  • A warrant or comparable court order supported by probable cause;
  • A 2703(d) court order [1] (note that in certain jurisdictions a warrant or comparable court order may be required); or
  • Customer consent.

CONTENTS OF COMMUNICATIONS SENT VIA ONSTAR SYSTEMS

If the information is available and the communications have been stored for 180 days or less, OnStar may supply the information subject to:

  • A warrant or comparable court order supported by probable cause; or
  • Customer consent.

If the information is available and the communications have been stored for more than 180 days, OnStar may supply the information subject to:

  • A warrant or comparable court order supported by probable cause;
  • A 2703(d) court order noting that the OnStar customer has received prior notice or that prior notice is delayed on statutory grounds;
  • An administrative, grand jury, or trial subpoena, that notes that the OnStar customer has received prior notice or that prior notice is delayed on statutory grounds; or
  • Customer consent.

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

If the information is available, OnStar may supply the information subject to:

  • A warrant or comparable court order supported by probable cause;
  • A 2703(d) court order;
  • An administrative, grand jury, or trial subpoena; or
  • Customer consent.

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

If the information is available, OnStar may supply the information subject to:

  • A warrant or comparable court order supported by probable cause;
  • A 2703(d) court order; or
  • Customer 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 (for example, call identifying data for calls made within 90 days of the request).  You should send requests for such access directly to the underlying facilities-based carrier for review and action.

How to Request Information

Serve your request for information from OnStar LLC through OnStar’s registered agent, Corporation Service Company (CSC). You can obtain the address for a CSC location in your jurisdiction by calling 1-888-690-2882.

Please address all requests to:

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

Please identify the following (if applicable) when you submit a request for information: the date and time of the relevant occurrence(s), a description of the relevant service provided by OnStar, and the account records you are seeking.

To help OnStar identify the account and comply with your request, please provide, to the extent available and applicable, the following:

  1. Customer’s full name and mailing address including ZIP code.
  2. Home phone number on file with OnStar.
  3. OnStar Account Number.
  4. Vehicle Identification Number, including year, make, model.
  5. OnStar Hands Free Calling Number.
  6. In the case of OnStar Good Samaritan calls, the date of the call and the OnStar case number provided to 9-1-1 dispatch by OnStar at the time of the call.
  7. Date and time of relevant occurrences.
  8. A description of the relevant service provided by OnStar.
  9. A description of the records you are seeking.

Please note that OnStar does not create or provide transcripts of audio recordings, and OnStar cannot guarantee that an 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.

[1] A 2703(d) court order is defined under the federal Stored Communications Act, 18 U.S.C. §§ 2701 et seq. as a court order issued by a court of competent jurisdiction indicating that the requesting entity has offered specific and articulable facts showing that there are reasonable grounds to believe that the information sought is relevant and material to an ongoing criminal investigation.

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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