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S€EME Keeping its guard up In Seattle, a bank moves. Men load roughly $3 billion in cash and securi-ties onto handcarts, wheel the treasure out of a bank and stash it in silver gray, box-shaped bucks. Other men, armed with pistols, shotguns and submachine guns, hover nearby, The operation is quick and quiet. In San Francisco, an armored car and its crew escort the Beatles and their electronic accoutrements from the airport to their hotel. In Edmonton, two armed guards and an armored car show up in a picture on the society page of the daily newspa-per—as background for a model. It's all in a day's work for the men of Loomis Armored Car Service, a sub-sidiary of Loomis Corporation, client of H&S Seattle. A family business that re-cently went public, Loomis now has 45 branches in the United States and Canada. It all started around the turn of the century when Lee B. Loomis began hauling gold by dogsled and mule train out of the Yukon and Alaska. In those days, Mr. Loomis offered his customers security— 1900s style—by strapping on a revolver. In 1925 he moved to Port-land, Oregon, where he modernized his security style by acquiring his first armored car. The heavy vehicle gen-erated interest and curiosity in the community, hut not much business. Two years later a crime wave con-vinced businessmen that sending large 26 sums of currency by messenger was un-safe and outmoded. Within five years, Lee Loomis began branching out. Since the Roaring Twenties armored cars and concepts of security have come a long way. Though they are called cars (perhaps because the ear-liest models were converted automo-biles), the armored vehicles are actual-ly trucks, custom-made to Loomis spe-cifications. The cost runs around $12,-000 each, but they provide good value because their life expectancy is about ten years. One old favorite of the fleet is a 1955 two-ton truck, which sur-vived into 1968 and ran half a million miles. Then it was converted to ac-commodate a new, larger engine and began a second life. H&S accountants working on prop-erty records for Loomis don't have to be concerned about trade-ins on armored cars. According to Charles A. Pancerzewski, H&S principal in Seattle, where Loomis now has its head-quarters: "For security reasons, the trucks are cut into scrap when they become unusable." Today, under the direction of Lee Loomis' son, Walter, and his grandson, Charles, the company provides 1970-style security. It operates on the prin-ciple that Loomis is a transportation organization whose key service is pro-tection. The 200-unit fleet of armored vehicles in various sizes have remote-control door locks, gas-proof ventila-tion systems and bullet-proof glass. Re-volvers, however, are never very far out of the picture. Drivers and guards must maintain proficiency in firearms by frequent range practice. In 1969, Loomis won the National Armored Car Association pistol matches competing against marksmen from most armored car companies in the United States. The 800 high-caliber Loomis guards, custodians, patrolmen and drivers un-dergo continual training, making the Loomis motto, "Safety With Dispatch," more than just a slogan. One guard, a 30-year veteran with Loomis, said, "I've never been in a holdup and I probably never will be. But we are trained to expect trouble at any time and we're ready for it." Loomis vigilance extends over all sorts of cargo—gold bullion, hard cash, jewels, art treasures—a cartage that averages half a billion dollars a day for banks, brokerage houses, supermarkets, toll booths; from Hawaii to Alaska, from San Francisco to St. Paul, and across western Canada. Not long ago Loomis delivered 13,000 ancient coins to the vault of the Royal Bank of Can-ada, some of them Grecian pieces dat-ing back to the sixth century B. C. It is a measure of the Loomis Cor-poration's reputation for responsibility that the Beatles have written into their contract that Loomis is to provide offi-cial escort whenever the British rock group appears in San Francisco.
Loomis Armored Car Service
Benning Construction Co.
Pancerzewaski, Charles A.
Christensen, Oreson H.
Parr, Theron L.
Beamer, Elmer G.
Haskins & Sells. Seattle Office
Haskins & Sells. Cincinnati Office
Haskins & Sells. Atlanta Office
Haskins & Sells. Greenville Office
Haskins & Sells. Cleveland Office
|Abstract||Illustrations not included in this Web version.|
H&S Reports, Vol. 07, (1970 winter), p. 26-29
|Source||Originally published by: Haskins & Sells|
|Rights||Copyright and permission to republish held by: Deloitte|
|Format||PDF page image with corrected OCR scanned at 400 dpi|
|Collection||Deloitte Digital Collection|
|Digital Publisher||University of Mississippi Library. Accounting Collection|