RAILWAY OFFICE OF ARBITRATION
& DISPUTE RESOLUTION
CASE NO. 3950
VIA RAIL CANADA INC.
assessment of discipline to Locomotive Engineer Carl Pingitore of
DISPUTE - CORPORATION:
The assessment of 10 demerit marks to the discipline record of Mr. Carl Pingitore.
UNION’S STATEMENT OF ISSUE:
The Corporation held an investigation into the incident claiming that Mr. Pingitore intentionally delayed the deadhead departure in order to delay the subsequent departure of train #1 from Sioux Lookout later that evening. As a result, Mr. Pingitore was assessed 10 demerits.
It is the
Corporation’s response has been the acknowledgement of the
CORPORATION’S STATEMENT OF ISSUE:
The Corporation submits that Mr. Pingitore deliberately failed to advise his superiors of the missing taxi thereby intentionally delaying the departure of his deadhead tour of service by 1 hour and 25 minutes. The Corporation further submits that Mr. Pingitore is a highly experienced, short service employee who is familiar with the deadhead process and deliberately failed to report the missing taxi.
Under the circumstances, the Corporation maintains that the discipline was warranted and appropriate.
(SGD.) T. MARKEWICH (SGD.) D. STROKA
FOR: GENERAL CHAIRMAN SENIOR ADVISOR, LABOUR RELATIONS
There appeared on behalf of the Corporation:
D. Stroka –
Sr. Advisor, Labour Relations,
B. A. Blair –
Sr. Advisor, Labour Relations,
Wm. Mann – Manager, Train Operations – East
There appeared on behalf of the
M. A. Church –
B. Willows –
T. Markewich –
G. Mensaghi – Local Chairman, Division 854
C. Pingitore – Grievor
AWARD OF THE ARBITRATOR
confirms that as part of his regular assignment on
reveals that Mr. Pingitore and his workmate, Mr. Arthur Buisson, reported on
time at the Winnipeg Terminal to take their taxi to Sioux Lookout. Normally the
taxi should have been there at 09:00. In fact the taxi company had apparently
been misinformed as to the pick up point and proceeded to the Winnipeg
Maintenance Centre. The error was apparently not discovered until approximately
10:07, at which point the cab was dispatched to the
The Corporation maintains that the grievor was responsible for the delay in the departure of his deadhead assignment because he failed to alert anyone as to the tardiness of the taxi, and indeed the error was not discovered until it was corrected by the taxi company itself. On that basis, following a disciplinary investigation, he was assessed ten demerits.
The Arbitrator is compelled to agree with the Corporation’s judgement in this matter. While a delay of some ten to fifteen minutes might be normal, I have some difficulty understanding how the grievor and his mate could not have arrived at reasonable concerns as to the timely execution of their deadhead assignment when there was no taxi present for them a half hour after the scheduled time, much less one hour and eighteen minutes after that time, when the cab finally did arrive without their having done anything. I am not persuaded by the grievor’s suggestion that he and Mr. Buisson had no knowledge of the problems which might be confronting the cab company. I am satisfied that a normal regard for their employer’s interests would have caused reasonable employees to alert management to the fact that a cab was not there as scheduled, or at least to make inquiries with respect to what might be happening. It appears that the almost hour and a half delay incurred created a domino effect which the Corporation came to view as contributing to the delay of their train the following morning, given that the grievor and his mate booked eight hours rest upon their arrival in Sioux Lookout.
In the result, the Arbitrator is satisfied that the assessment of ten demerits was within the appropriate range of discipline for what can only be characterized as an unsatisfactory degree of indifference or negligence on the part of the grievor. The grievance must therefore be dismissed.
MICHEL G. PICHER