A seasoned skating teacher was enjoying some alone time out on a frozen lake yesterday, gliding along the ice expanse which he thought should still have been frozen solid. Yet the spring elements must have been at work, or he must have hit a weak spot, because veteran skater William Rogers suddenly found himself submerged in the shock-inducing ice-cold waters of Salmon Falls River in Somersworth.
He struggled for several minutes but could not climb out of the rugged hole in the ice, and hypothermia quickly set in.
He had no chance of reaching his phone while clinging onto the ice for dear life, and it dawned on him that he had ten minutes at best before he became unresponsive.
Then Rogers remembered he was still wearing his Apple Watch, and he used it to call emergency services. The firefighters got to him in the nick of time after only five minutes, managing to save his life.
The full story was covered by local TV Channel WMUR here, although viewing rights may be denied in the U.S.
All Apple Watch versions feature an Emergency SOS feature for quickly calling 911 using a number of ways (none of which are completely hands-free yet, however). There is also a fall detection feature which when enabled, will automatically call 911 if it senses a fall and you remain immobile for one minute. Among other safety functions, the Apple Watch Series 5 or later allows you to call emergency services from nearly anywhere in the world as long as you have cellular service, by forwarding your call to local first responders.