It would be great if WAZE had an SOS function if you feel sick while driving, are involved in an accident or have car trouble and it may be difficult to call. An SOS button, which activates a call automatically to nearby help could be a lifesaver.

Waze in Costa Rica reports having some 700,000 active users monthly

Well, that is what WAZE is working on, to become the first place to which its 700,000 active users monthly in Costa Rica, can get help in the event of an accident or mechanical problems.

Waze works by crowdsourcing information from drivers to report on traffic conditions and road incidents.

In the first phase of the project, when the SOS is activated by Waze users with a problem, say an accident, a flat tire, out of gasoline or mechanical failure, can request assistance by simply pressing a button on their smartphone and the information, including exact location and the type of problem, is passed on to other “wazers”. The wazer requesting help will then receive notification that someone has accepted the call and that help is on the way.

In the second phase, the company seeks to establish alliances with professionals who provide roadside assistance such as tow trucks, mechanics or insurers, so that the driver requesting assistance has a choice, it can request support from another driver or a professional.

“In order to improve the functions we have opened a space to listen and observe the needs of users, the issue of request for help on the street is in high demand in Costa Rica and worldwide, so we started working on the idea,” commented Paulo Cabral, head of business development at Waze.

The SOS project, with both stages, has already been developed, according to information from the company.

Costa Rica is among the top five countries in Latin America where the Waze app is used. The other countries are Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, and Chile.

The company does not rule out joining with insurance companies in the country, as it did in Mexico so that the institutions share their data with Waze to define the routes with the highest incidence of accidents.