ST. LOUIS – AT&T has launched a new service intended to improve emergency response efforts in Missouri, Illinois, and several other states.

AT&T announced a new location-based routing service Tuesday that would route 911 calls from its wireless subscribers to the closest dispatch center. The wireless carrier has introduced a “Locate Before Route” feature with support from Intrado, a national telecommunications company.

The new service allows AT&T to track the location of a device and route it from within 50 meters of its location. From there, AT&T collects hybrid information to route the call to the nearest-available 911 call center.

Prior to routing service, AT&T says wireless 911 calls were routed based on the location of cell towers. In some cases, emergency calls went to cities or counties that overlapped since the towers can cover up to a 10-mile radius. With a more accurate system for routing calls, the company is hoping for fewer delays in emergency response.

Right now, AT&T is the only carrier to provide the new routing service. The service is currently available in 16 states, including Missouri and Illinois. AT&T expects to roll out the service nationwide by June. For more information on AT&T’s 911 response, click here.