Swedish Man Credits Apple Watch with Fall Detection for Saving His Life

Apple Watch Fall Detection Saved Lives Credit: Aftonbladet
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The Apple Watch has proven itself to be a device capable of saving lives. Now, one of Apple’s newest Watch features is being credited with saving someone.

Swedish man Gustavo Rodriguez, 34, was in his kitchen cooking on Friday when he suddenly felt a strange sensation in his back — which quickly turned into crippling pain.

“It felt like someone pushed a knife in my back,” Rodriguez told Swedish-language publication Aftonbladet.

He collapsed to the floor. The pain was reportedly so strong that he began to black out. For a few minutes, Rodriguez could not move, he said. All the while, the stove where he had been cooking just moments earlier was still on.

Just then, Rodriguez’s Apple Watch Series 4 buzzed him with a notification and asked if he would like to call 112 — Sweden’s emergency services phone number.

The Swedish man managed to drag himself to the living room and lay down on his sofa. He realized he had left his smartphone in the kitchen, but was able to call his mother-in-law from his Apple Watch.

Since she lived nearby, she arrived in two minutes and was able to turn off the stove. Emergency services also arrived promptly. Rodriguez was given a morphine shot for his pain and was taken to the hospital.

While he did not appear to call emergency services from his Apple Watch, Rodriguez’s wearable did allow him to quickly contact his mother-in-law. Similarly, if he was unable to respond to the Series 4’s prompt, the Watch would have contacted emergency services automatically.

Rodriguez said he doesn’t know how it all could have gone down without his Apple Watch. His house could have burned down, or his daughter may have burned herself on the hot kitchen stove.

In any case, he said he is glad that everything ended up okay and that he has a trusty companion on his wrist.

“Before I got it, I thought the features were a fun gimmick,” he said in Swedish (via Google Translate). “Now that you get used to them, you just know that it’s completely clockwise.”

There has been a slew of stories of Apple’s flagship wearable saving someone’s life, mostly attributable to its heart rate sensor and SOS feature. But this is the first reported instance we’ve seen of a report mentioning fall detection, which recently debuted on the Apple Watch Series 4.

Fall Detection can automatically determine whether a user has fallen, tripped or slipped. Once it’s detected a fall, it asks the user if they’d like to contact emergency services — if a user is unresponsive for a minute, the Watch does so automatically and sends off their current location.

It’s enabled by default for users who are 65 or older. Others can turn fall detection on manually by going to the Health app.

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