Gunfire-Detecting Technology Improving Public Safety in Pittsburgh’s Most Dangerous Areas

City Council hopes to extend the contract with SST to continue using the ShotSpotter technology.

PITTSBURGH — Gunshot-detecting technology used in Pittsburgh’s most dangerous areas has been a success through its testing phase. Now, City Council wants to extend the contract with SST Inc. and look into expanding its use across the city.

The technology, called ShotSpotter, uses sensors to detect gunfire sounds. Once the sounds are detected, it is relayed to a technician who surveys the scene and confirms the gunshots before alerting police. WTAE in Pittsburgh reports this process takes 30 to 45 seconds.

ShotSpotter helped police arrest 41-year-old Charles McKinney, who is accused of killing 29-year-old Janese Talton outside of a Pittsburgh bar on Friday.

“It has proven to both save lives and solve crimes,” said Councilman Ricky Burgess. “It has been a good added tool to improve public safety.

Pittsburgh started testing the system in 2014 and now the city wants to extend the contract with SST through 2016 to continue to improve public safety. So far, the city has paid the company $194,000 for the installation of the equipment, and it would cost an additional $135,000 to extend the deal through the end of the year.

Check out the report above for the complete story.

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