How to use the 'In Case of Emergency' iPhone shortcut to get quick help from rescue services or a contact

Car broken down emergencySumetee Theesungnern / EyeEmThe In Case of Emergency iPhone shortcut lets you choose who to contact and get help from for any incident.
  • The third-party In Case of Emergency iPhone shortcut makes getting help in an emergency a single-button process.
  • This iPhone shortcut lets you customize who you alert, and gives your location, condition, and more in an emergency.
  • To use the In Case of Emergency iPhone shortcut, you’ll need to have the Shortcuts app and an iPhone with iOS 12 or higher.
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It’s always important to be prepared, especially for emergencies. Apple helps iPhone users stay safe when unexpected events occur with built-in tools like Emergency SOS and emergency contacts.

But a third-party iPhone shortcut, In Case of Emergency, makes getting help even easier. It even lets you customize who you contact for help, making it quicker and easier for you to find the right person for each situation.

Available for devices with iOS 12 or later, this personalized emergency shortcut sets off a multi-step chain of alerts with just one tap.

How the In Case of Emergency shortcut is different from Emergency SOS

When iPhone owners use the SOS tool, it’s a multi-step process to activate all its services. Your device also automatically calls the local emergency number, which means that it essentially treats every emergency the same.

The In Case of Emergency shortcut dramatically cuts down those steps, creating a single button or voice-activated process. Unlike the Emergency SOS feature that appears when you power down an iPhone, the ICE shortcut can trigger multiple messages and instructions, customizable to anything from a deadly medical event to a car breakdown to an incident walking home alone.

Pregnant mom leaving houseLeoPatrizi/Getty ImagesUse the In Case of Emergency shortcut when an emergency incident happens and you’re alone.

This shortcut lets you text an emergency contact a pre-written message with your location followed by a text to the same or different contacts with specific instructions based on the type of event. It can also pull up a note on your phone’s display for any bystanders or first responders that find you.

Another advantage of the shortcut is that it’s discreet. If you’re in a dangerous situation at home or in public, you can notify emergency contacts quickly via text instead of having an audible phone call that could put you at further risk.

If you’re considering using the shortcut, here’s how to set it up.

How to customize the In Case of Emergency shortcut on iPhone

To change and further customize this alert, you can tap the three dots at the top of the “In Case of Emergency” button. Once you do, you’ll be taken to a list of the steps and features of the iPhone that they utilize.

This list of steps is highly customizable, allowing you to change your set contacts, texts, add the shortcut to your home screen from here, or even add and remove actions to the shortcut.

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