Cambridge Police Department to Conduct ShotSpotter Testing August 12th

The Cambridge Police Department will be conducting a live-fire gunshot training on Tuesday, August 12 between 8-10 p.m. in the Area 4 and Inman neighborhoods to test the city’s new ShotSpotter Flex solution.  The controlled testing is being conducted for sensor calibrations, quality of gunshot detection and validation analysis purposes. This training exercise presents no danger to the public and we urge residents not to be alarmed. 

In the interest of public safety, Cambridge Police will be onsite at all test locations. The tests will consist of a sequence of gunshot sounds followed by validation of quality detection by ShotSpotter. During the tests, a bullet trap will be used to ensure public safety. No bullets will be fired into the air. There is no danger to anyone in the testing areas, which will be held in cordoned-off areas away from the public. 

How ShotSpotter Works

If a gun is fired, the sound of the explosion radiates out from the point of origin.  As a result of this sound, multiple ShotSpotter sensors throughout a defined coverage area are triggered. The data is transmitted to SST Operations (the company that installs and maintains the sensors), where the data is analyzed to determine whether it was actually a gunshot, rather than some other ambient noise. If confirmed as gunfire, the SST analysts will pinpoint the origin of the gunfire. Coordinates of the origin of the gunshot(s) are transmitted simultaneously to the Emergency Communications Center and the laptop computers in patrol vehicles. The time of locating a gunshot, which typically takes anywhere between 10-20 minutes, is generally less than one minute with ShotSpotter.


For more information on the testing of ShotSpotter, please contact the Cambridge Police Department at 617-349-3237 or You can also visit, follow the Cambridge Police on Twitter or like the Cambridge Police on Facebook


Visiting CPD

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Cambridge Police Department

Branville G. Bard, Jr.
Police Commissioner

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