First in the nation shooter detection technology was tested during a police drill TueCharles Krupa/Associated Press pool

Methuen Police conducted a live active shooter drill at a school -- an exercise intended to show the benefits of a first-in-the-nation shooter detection system.

The system tells police where the shooter is in real time.

Manufactured by the Rowley-based Shooter Detection Systems LLC uses audio and visual sensors to convey where a shooter is located in the building to school officials and law enforcement authorities.

The system, which features, small smoke-alarm-sized sensors, could cost upwards of $100,000.


Methuen Police Chief Joseph Solomon suggested the system represented a natural progression in school security. By 2002, he said, his department had already started training police how to respond to a school shooting.

"Our officers know exactly where the shooter is, how many shots were fired, and if the shooter is moving to different areas of the building. It would save several minutes in a real-life situation, and that could mean dozens of lives saved."

According to gun control advocates Everytown, there have been 88 shootings in the country since the December 2012 shooting in Newtown, Connecticut that killed 20 children and six adult school employees.

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