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Automatic Crash Response Assists a First Responder

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A veteran of the public safety field, Timothy Kimble understands the importance of a quick response after a vehicle crash — which is why he was grateful for OnStar when he was involved in one.

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When a volunteer paramedic was involved in a crash, he was grateful to have OnStar in his vehicle.

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When a volunteer paramedic was involved in a crash, he was grateful to have OnStar in his vehicle

Timothy Kimble knows emergency response. He has more than 49 years of experience in the public safety field, including work in law enforcement, fire and EMS, and currently works as a volunteer paramedic, routinely doing eight-hour shifts in an ambulance.

But one August day, Timothy was the one who needed assistance from First Responders.

Timothy was driving home to Franklin County, Pennsylvania, from Virginia when vehicles ahead of him stopped without any warning — no turn signals or even emergency flashers. Timothy couldn’t avoid the stopped vehicles, and his Chevrolet Equinox collided with them, deploying the airbags.

“It being on a straight stretch of road, you couldn’t tell that anything was sitting still. I ran right into them because both vehicles were sitting right there,” Timothy recalls.

The crash triggered OnStar Automatic Crash Response*16 in Timothy’s Equinox, and an OnStar Advisor was connected in to his vehicle. When the Advisor contacted local 911 dispatchers, the county dispatchers recognized Timothy’s name from his public safety work and called his cellphone directly.

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They also were able to contact a humane officer to care for Timothy’s service dog, Macy, who had been in the vehicle. The golden retriever was two years old at the time of the crash and immediately checked on Timothy.

“She wouldn’t leave me. She stayed right beside the car,” Timothy says. “She’s my partner, that’s for sure.”

Timothy suffered some internal fractures, and his vehicle was totaled. But he got another Chevrolet Equinox — and, of course, made sure to activate OnStar.

“I don’t think that I’ll ever have another vehicle without OnStar. It’s just too important a service, and I have faith in it,” he says.

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Aside from the crash, Timothy says he’s relied on OnStar countless times over many years — from getting Turn-by-Turn directions*20 to acting as a Good Samaritan*16a and reporting a disabled semitruck, and even requesting Roadside Assistance*17 once after running out of gas.

“There’s very rarely a time I’m in my vehicle that I don’t use it for navigation or things like that,” he says. “In an emergency-response-type situation, I used it in my vehicle to help tell me where to go.”

And, with the introduction of the OnStar Guardian® app,*82 Timothy has even been able to bring that added peace of mind with him in ambulances while working. As he lives alone (aside from his service dog Macy), he had previously subscribed to a medical alert system, but canceled it in favor of using the Guardian app on his phone. And Timothy is considering adding his siblings’ driving-age children to this account*84 so they can use Guardian too.

“Making OnStar available to anyone with any vehicle is something that I think is, frankly, absolutely essential,” he says of OnStar Guardian. “Because if I’m in another vehicle, I really don’t feel safe unless it’s equipped with OnStar.”