The new-generation 2007 Mercedes-Benz S-Class sedan is the first-ever car that comes with lines marking where the roof pillars should be cut if occupants are ever pinned in the car after a serious collision. Imbedded in the black shading at the edge of the windshield and the rear window, the lines show rescue workers the points where the heavily reinforced roof and “A” and “C” pillars can be cut safely.

Those markings complement the comprehensive rescue guidelines that Mercedes-Benz makes available without charge. While the guidelines on its web site at www.mbusa.com are most often used for training of rescue workers, they can provide a wealth of helpful information for any interested consumer.

From Air Bags to Mirrors


The company’s web site includes easy-to-use diagrams showing air bag and battery location for various Mercedes-Benz model families. Especially important when fire is involved, the diagrams also show the location of magnesium parts, ETR seat belt tensioners and auxiliary batteries that are used on some models. And, since auto-dimming mirrors contain a thin layer of corrosive electro-chromic liquid, even the identifying dot on all auto-dimming mirrors is called out as a caution to rescue workers.

The guidelines cover many of the high-tech Mercedes-Benz features that should be considered in an accident rescue. For example, an easy-entry-exit feature that moves the seat and steering wheel might need to be turned off during a rescue, and workers can learn the basics of the optional Keyless Go system that can unlock and turn off the car without needing a key.
The information includes instructions about removal of head restraints, including the Mercedes-Benz active head restraint system, as well as cautions about working near the pop-up roll bar that is standard equipment on some convertible models.

Tele Aid to the Rescue


Another key element of post-accident care covered on the site is Mercedes-Benz Tele Aid – an emergency calling system that might have helped summon the rescue team in the first place. Standard on many Mercedes-Benz models and optional on the others, Tele Aid automatically uses the cellular phone network to establish contact with a trained response specialist if a collision deploys any emergency seatbelt tensioner or air bag in the vehicle. Simultaneously, the system transmits the location of the vehicle via GPS satellites. The response specialist can then notify the nearest appropriate emergency service and help guide them to the vehicle. After responding to the emergency, the response specialist also can notify the owner’s designated emergency contacts. And, vehicle occupants (or rescue workers) can contact a response specialist at any time simply by pushing a button marked “SOS.”

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