SHP - 32

IN THE MATTER OF AN ARBITRATION

BETWEEN

RAILWAY ASSOCIATION OF CANADA

(the "Company")

AND

RAILWAY EMPLOYEES DEPARTMENT, DIVISION NO. 4

(the "Union")

RE: GRIEVANCE OF D. LEACH Ė ALLEGED ASSIGNMENT OF MACHINISTíS WORK TO CRANE OPERATOR

 

SOLE ARBITRATOR: J. F. W. Weatherill

 

 

APPEARING FOR THE UNION:

J. H. Clark

M. McClenaghan

 

APPEARING FOR THE COMPANY:

A. Rotondo for the Ontario Northland Railway

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A hearing in this matter was held in Montreal on January 14, 1976

 

AWARD OF THE ARBITRATOR

The joint statement of fact and of issue in this case is as follows:

JOINT STATEMENT OF FACT

On March 11, 1975, the auxiliary crane, working at Temagami, was rendered inoperative because the fuel pump was not functioning. The Back Shop Foreman, J. Burton, travel led to Temagami with a Machinist, N. Giroux, to determine the extent of damage and to make repairs if possible. They found that the fuel pump shaft was broken. The machinist removed the pump and it was delivered to Noresco Equipment in Haileybury by the foreman for repairs after which the machinist reinstalled the pump and then returned with the foreman to North Bay.

The repairs did not hold and the pump failed again the next evening. The crane operator was instructed to remove the pump and send it to the shops at North Bay to ascertain if an alternate pump could be adapted as a replacement. A pump could not be adapted and the crane had to be returned to North Bay for repairs.

JOINT STATEMENT OF ISSUE

The Union claimed that the removal of a fuel pump is part of the dismantling of an engine as spelled out in Rule 53.2 and having the crane operator perform that task was a violation of Rule 53.2. A claim for four hours pay was entered by Machinist D. W. Leach, first man on the overtime list. The claim was denied by the Company.

 

Rule 53.2 provides as follows:

Machinistsí Work

53.2 Machinistsí work shall consist of laying out, fitting, adjusting, shaping, boring, slotting, milling, and grinding of metals used in building, assembling, maintaining, dismantling and installing locomotives and engines (operated by steam or other power, including Diesels, and other metal power devices), pumps, cranes, hoists, elevators, pneumatic and hydraulic tools and machinery; scale building, erecting and maintaining shafting and other shop machinery; ratchet and other skilled drilling band reaming; tool and die making, tool grinding and machine grinding; axle truing, axle, wheel and tire turning and boring; engine inspecting; air equipment, lubricator and injector work; removing, replacing, equipment, bolting and breaking of all joints on superheaters; oxyacetylene and electric welding on work generally recognized as machinists, work; the operation of all machines used in such work, including drill presses and bolt threaders, using a facing, boring or turning head or milling apparatus; car wheel borer, lassiter and lapping machine operators; plate edge planer operation; superheater bender and surfacer; engine truck fitter; tyre setter (driving wheels and engine truck); cylinder chipper; brass filer and assembler (not including trimming); packing of cab mountings and glands; tender truck building and repairing in back shops; crane slingers in locomotive shops on cranes of 100 ton capacity or over, not working under the direct guidance of a foreman; driving wheel pressmen; and all other work generally recognized as machinistsí work.

It is the Unionís contention that the removal of the fuel pump from the crane on March 12, 1975 fell within the scope of this article and could only properly be performed by a machinist. Leaving to one side the question whether the work described in the first clause of that article is merely such work as involves the several operations first referred to, it remains to be determined whether what was done in this case would properly be described as dismantling an engine, or indeed dismantling a crane, although the joint statement does not refer to the latter.

It is acknowledged that equipment operators may quite properly make adjustments to certain parts of their equipment, such as clutches, brakebands or valves, while it is in service. Here what was involved was the removal of an elementary unit, so that it could be repaired by a qualified person. The removal itself was a simple task, not involving the particular skills of a tradesman. I think it could not properly be said to amount to the "dismantling" of the crane.

The Union relied on the fact that, in another case, the claim of a machinist to certain work was granted. Even if the cases were identical, it would not follow that this claim ought to be allowed, since the settlement of any claim may be made for a variety of reasons. In any event, the claim which was allowed was in respect of the work of overhauling a work head Ii ft cylinder, replacing a rod and piston. This work would appear to involve a machinistís skills, and to go considerably beyond what is involved in the instant case. In my view the other case has no relevance to the one before me.

The position of the Company that "the crane operator will do whatever he can to keep the crane operating" may be thought to go too far; in my view, it would be improper for the operator to attempt to act as a machinist with respect to his equipment. In the instant case, however, the operator did not do that, but performed a task properly regarded as preparatory to, and not part of, a machinistís work, although a machinist might also perform such work in the course of his own functions.

In the circumstances of the instant case, I find that there has been no violation of Rule 53.2. The grievance is therefore dismissed.

DATED at Toronto, this 2nd day of February, 1976.

(sgd.) J. F. W. Weatherill

Arbitrator