By Author(s): Homer Robertson 
Published Friday, October 31, 2008
| From the November 2008  Issue of FireRescue 
Business is always changing and, in turn, the fire service finds new ways to change along with it.
As businesses and homeowners seek to better protect themselves from the criminal element, both residential and commercial buildings reflect huge changes in security measures. Unfortunately, what makes it harder for the bad guys to get in, also makes it harder for us good guys to get in (and out).
The American 2000 high-security lock, also called the “hockey puck” due to its round shape, is one of those challenges. If you haven’t had to force one yet, you soon will.
Conventional forcible-entry methods are rarely effective when facing the American 2000. Crews attempting to force this lock need specific training and the correct tools.
This month’s quick drill will cover three methods to defeat the hockey puck.
Method 1: Attack the Hasp
Many times locks are much more formidable than what they’re attached to. This is especially true when encountering the hockey puck. Most people can’t see past the fact that they’re installing a $75 lock on a $5 hasp. But that can be our key to entry.
Take time to perform a good size-up of the entire area in which you intend to force entry. Don’t get tunnel vision focusing on the hockey puck. You may only need to attack the hasp.
Depending on the size and weight of the hasp, you may be able to force the hasp away from the door using conventional forcible-entry methods with a set of irons.
If you encounter a high-quality hasp, using a rotary saw with a metal-cutting blade may be your most effective method of entry. Attack the hasp where you can make the least number of cuts.
Remember: By attacking the hasp, you avoid having to cut the hockey puck.
Method 2: Force the Lock
If the hockey puck is attached to some type of heavy-duty door or reinforced gate, you may need to attack the lock itself.
The key distinction here is whether the lock is exposed or guarded. If it doesn’t have guards around it for protection, the quickest method is to force it using a standard pipe wrench, with the help of a short cheater pipe.
Simply get a solid bite on the hockey puck and force it downward, breaking the hasp eye.
Method 3: Cut through the Lock
Many American 2000 locks will be protected or guarded by enclosure within a section of pipe, exposing only the front of the lock and the keyway. This guard will prevent using the pipe wrench or striking down on the lock.
When faced with a guarded hockey puck, cutting is the quickest, most effective method of defeating it. A rotary saw equipped with a high-quality metal-cutting blade should make quick work of most locks.
First, locate the keyway. Make the cut about three-quarters up the lock, opposite the keyway. Using the saw, cut completely through the lock and guard. This cut should completely cut through the pin on the American 2000 and damage the hasp eye, allowing you to remove it from the door or gate.
A Final Word
The American 2000 can pose real challenges to responders who aren’t equipped to handle them. Take the time to identify buildings in your response area that feature hockey puck locks. Then, practice with your crew the three methods to defeat them.
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