Ahead of tonight’s Season 3 premiere of Live PD, A&E has given another massive order to its flagship series, picking up an additional 150 episodes of the hit real-time reality police docuseries. Totaling 450 hours, the deal extends the series’ run into 2019, with the new order bringing the number of commissioned episodes to date to 293.

Live PD, from Big Fish Entertainment, an MGM company, was a risky proposition when A&E committed to an eight-episode run in fall 2016. The show quickly caught on, earning ever growing additional episode orders, starting with 13 and most recently 100 in July 2017.

The expanding orders mirror the series’ ratings trajectory. Since its premiere in October 2016, Live PD has grown by more than 150% in total viewers (L+SD and L+3), hitting a series high of 2.7 million total viewers on April 7, 2018. Over the course of the 80-episode second season, Live PD was the No. 1 show of the night on all of television 28 times (L+SD, A25-54, excluding sports). In August, Live PD was the #1 program on all of TV among A25-54 and A18-49 on Fridays and Saturdays (L+SD, excluding NFL Pre-Season games), propelling A&E to be the #1 TV network on Fridays and Saturdays for the month with A25-54 and A18-49.

Live PD has tapped into the cultural zeitgeist in ways we never imaged, said Elaine Frontain Bryant, EVP and Head of Programming for A&E. “Our viewers are passionate and are truly engaged with the show. In fact, they have helped law enforcement agencies find missing children and wanted fugitives.”

Hosted by Dan Abrams with analysis from Tom Morris Jr. and Sgt. Sean ‘Sticks’ Larkin, Live PD  follows diverse police departments from across the country in real time as they patrol their communities. Using dash cams along with fixed rig and handheld cameras, the series captures the work of a varied mix of urban and rural police forces on a typical Friday and Saturday night. Live PD also features law enforcement officers from the series who appear in-studio as guest analysts to provide additional commentary.

Among the agencies Live PD will be following at the beginning of season three are the Richland County Sheriff’s Office, the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, the El Paso Police Department, the Warwick Police Department, the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, the Mission Police Department, the Salinas Police Department and the Nye County Sheriff’s Office.

In a throwback to America’s Most Wanted, Live PD has two popular features. In partnership with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the show’s “Missing” segments highlight the stories of missing children. Tips from “Live PD” viewers have helped law enforcement to recover seven children. The “Wanted” segment, in which law enforcement agencies across the country ask viewers for help in finding suspects wanted in crimes, has led to 11 fugitives being caught.

Cesareo, John Zito and Kara Kurcz executive produce for Big Fish Entertainment. A+E Networks holds worldwide distribution rights.

Live PD airs Friday and Saturday nights at 9 PM ET/PT.

Big Fish Entertainment was repped in the deal by CAA and attorneys Todd Weinstein and Tara Senior at Del Shaw Moonves.