ICE makes to the the dictionary

A PARAMEDIC is celebrating today after learning his lifesaving acronym has been officially recognised in the English language.Bob Brotchie came up with the idea for an ICE number, standing for In Case of Emergency, because he thought it would be useful if people used the term to store the name and number of an emergency contact in their mobile phone.

A PARAMEDIC is celebrating today after learning his lifesaving acronym has been officially recognised in the English language.

Bob Brotchie came up with the idea for an ICE number, standing for In Case of Emergency, because he thought it would be useful if people used the term to store the name and number of an emergency contact in their mobile phone.

Now because the acronym was so widely used the Macmillan English Dictionary has provided a definition and listed the phrase under its “new words” section on its website.

If the term remains in common usage, it should make it into the print edition of the dictionary.


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Mr Brotchie, 41, a paramedic with the East Anglian Ambulance Trust, said: “It would be amazing if ICE followed words like Hoover and Google into our everyday language - almost everyone you meet in the street has heard of it. I still can't quite believe it's all happened so fast.

“People asked what would happen if their mobile phone was password protected, if it was destroyed in an accident or the network went down.

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“So we devised the ICE card, where all member details are stored on a secure database and no personal details appear on the cards - just a membership number and a freephone number.

“Emergency personnel can ring the number and receive, within seconds, potentially life-saving medical information which the member has given us.

“Call-centre staff will then get in touch with the ICE contact, leaving the medical teams to get on with what they do best - saving lives.”

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