New telematics technologies helped Norfolk, Nebraska law enforcement officials apprehend three men suspected of killing four people during the armed robbery of a branch of the U.S. Bank. The getaway car, a stolen 2003 Subaru, was equipped with an OnStar navigation and communication system that with the owner’s permission, police used to locate the vehicle and the suspects. Because of the stolen vehicle recovery feature provided by OnStar, Nebraska authorities reportedly needed less than three hours to apprehend three suspects in the nation’s deadliest bank robbery in more than a decade. According to the company, over four million cars today are equipped with telematics technologies which utilize built-in wireless communications and Global Positioning Satellite systems to alert private emergency call centers when an airbag deploys or an on-board Mayday button is pushed, providing voice communications and the exact location and description of the vehicle in distress. In addition, as in this case, the same technologies can be used to provide fast and accurate locations of stolen vehicles. A growing number of drivers are also equipping their cars with vehicle recovery systems that use a silent beacon to help law enforcement locate stolen vehicles.

Originally posted on Fleet Financials