KEY TO SUCCESS: Nic Smith won the Master Locksmiths Association of Australasian Apprentice of the Year award.
KEY TO SUCCESS: Nic Smith won the Master Locksmiths Association of Australasian Apprentice of the Year award. Andrew Morgan

Gladstone's local hero with a lock pick

SAVING children from locked cars, needing police back up to change house locks and opening a high-tech safe.

They sound like scenes from an action movie.

And while locksmith Nic Smith says the movies do exaggerate some of his tasks, he rarely has a day where he arrives to work just to cut keys.

Nic said he often helped people get back into their homes.

"You get a lot of mums with kids hanging off them. They're doing the school runs in the early morning or late afternoon."

Nic said it was those mums and dads who were often running flat out, and they simply shut the door behind them with the keys inside.

"So they're always grateful," he said.

Opening house doors wasn't always simple, he explained.

Sometimes it was done so real estate agents could repossess the house after a bad tenant, which could be dangerous.

"When I was a scrawny 17-year-old in the dark doing a job like that (changing the lock on a house) it was good to have the police to help," he said.

Not only has Nic recently finished his apprenticeship with Keycut Services on Toolooa St, the 19-year-old completed an industry test that recognised him as one of the top locksmiths in the country.

He came first out of 16 finalists across Australasia.

He wants to do the six-hour Master Locksmiths Association of Australasia test to become a member.

NIC's TOP JOBS

He has to open or change locks on:

  •  Houses - people locking themselves out
  •  Cars - mostly older cars, newer models won't let you lock yourself out
  •  Safes - a time-consuming job to open
  •  Repossession - deceased estates or tenants that don't want to go


UPDATE: 72-year-old hospitalised for suspected snake bite

UPDATE: 72-year-old hospitalised for suspected snake bite

The elderly man is believed to have been bitten at Toolooa.

Threat to 'shoot and stab' neighbour earns prison sentence

Threat to 'shoot and stab' neighbour earns prison sentence

Neville Joseph Johnson pleaded guilty to a public nuisance offence.

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Project manager appointed for new Calliope high school

Honeywill Consulting will oversee the project.

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