Imagine being 17 years old and undergoing heart surgery to receive a pacemaker – and potentially owing your life to an “annoying” Apple Watch feature. Or, waking up in an Ambulance after riding your bike through Victoria’s Macedon Ranges, not knowing what happened or how emergency services got to you. These are the very real situations two Aussies found themselves in, both with their Apple Watch to thank for their potentially life-saving intervention.

After nagging her parents for an Apple Watch, Lexie Northcott finally got one on her 16th birthday. It wasn’t long though until that very watch would start sending her regular notifications about a low heart rate. As a young, fit and active 16 year old, this was dismissed as somewhat annoying on the assumption that a low heart rate was a sign of fitness.

Fast forward a year and at the doctors for another reason Lexie was asked if there was anything else that might be wrong. After her mum Karla told the doctor about these notifications it was assumed that Lexie would be ok, but sent her for an ECG to be sure. A week later, and Lexi was told she was at extreme risk of heart failure. They raced to Melbourne and received heart surgery where a Pacemaker was installed.

Lexie describes a whole new level of health since that surgery and both she and her family admit that it was only because of the Apple Watch that they actually looked into the possible condition.

Another Victorian who questions just where they’d be today without the Apple Watch is Bruce Mildenhall. Bruce loves to cycle, and was out for his regular ride in the Macedon Ranges – something happened and the next thing he knew he was inside an Ambulance where he could hear his wife pounding on the side asking if Bruce was inside and. if he was alive.

He’d been knocked unconscious from his bike. When he was, his Apple Watch detected the fall and dialled 000. At the same time, it sent a text message to his wife who was listed in his Medical ID as an emergency contact.

That allowed his wife to race to his location, and emergency services to attend promptly.

What happened? Well, when recovering Bruce from the road surface to put him on a stretcher he was – according to the Paramedic treating him – rather chatty. It was that chatty nature that revealed Bruce was indeed hit by a Kangaroo and knocked to the ground while riding. Bruce had no recollection of this.

Bruce reckons if it was not for the Apple Watch he would have been left stranded, and wonders what might have happened and how long he would have been there. He suffered a dislocated shoulder and fractured ribs – today, he’s back on the bike – his Apple Watch as critical to his gear as his helmet no doubt.

Fall Detection and Low Heart Rate notifications are just two of many features that are always keeping an eye on Apple Watch users.

Critically, a Cellular Apple Watch has the capabilities to contact Emergency Services directly regardless of whether or not you have a subscribed mobile plan.

Don’t ignore those notifications folks – could be a life-saver.