SHP 217





International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers




SOLE ARBITRATOR: J. F. W. Weatherill



There appeared on behalf of the Union:

A. Rosner

L. Biniaris



There appeared on behalf of the Company:

S. MacDougald

J. A. Cameron



A hearing in this matter was held at Montreal on December 17, 1986.



In this grievance, the grievors claim that they ought to have been called for certain work, and claim payment at overtime rates in respect of it.

The Joint Statement of Issue is as follows:

On August 16, 1984 diesel unit 4474 was inspected by two supervisors at the station at Parent, Quebec. They found that wheels in positions #1 and #2 had six inch flat spots and that those wheels had to be replaced by dummy wheels. They found that the wheels in #3 position were slightly damaged and could be repaired by grinding. The Auxiliary crane from Senneterrre was called to Parent to lift the diesel unit to replace the wheels.

The Company did not require a Machinist to accompany the Auxiliary crane to Parent. Machinists Beaudoin and Darveau submitted grievances contending that they should have been called to perform the work on diesel unit 4474 which was performed by members of the Carman Craft working with the Auxiliary crane. The Union contends that the Company violated Rules 53.1, 53.2 of Agreement 12.1 when Machinists Beaudoin and Darveau were no called to perform the work in dispute. The Union requests payment of the claims. The Company denies the alleged violations an has declined payment of the claims.

Rule 53 of the collective agreement sets out the Machinistsí Craft Special Rules. Rule 53.1 sets out Machinistsí Qualifications. In the instant case, the persons who performed the work in question were not, it is acknowledged, Machinists, and did not have Machinistsí qualifications. If indeed Machinists were properly required to do the work, then the Company was in violation of Rule 53.1. The issue turns, then, on whether or not the work was work exclusively within the scope of Rule 53.2, which sets out what is Machinistsí Work. Rule 53.2 is as follows.

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 and reaming; tool and axle making, tool grinding and machine grinding; axle truing, axel, 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; oxy-acetylene and electric welding on work generally recognized as machinistsí 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 operator; 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.

In the instant case, the Union refers in particular to the references in Rule 53.2 to "wheel and tire turning and boring"; "engine truck fitter" and "all other work generally, regarded as machinistsí work". I agree with the Union that questions of practicality or efficiency are irrelevant to the particular issue in this case, which is whether or not the work in question came within the scope of Rule 53.2, and thus whether the Company was required, by the terms or the collective agreement, to assign the work to a Machinist, if it wished to have it performed by any employee.

It would appear to be the general practice to have Machinists perform the work of removing and replacing locomotive trucks and wheels and the grinding and turning operations connected with locomotives. Indeed, when the locomotive in the instant case, unit 4474, was in fact repaired (partially in the diesel shop at Senneterre and partially at the Taschereau Yard Diesel Shop), work was performed by the appropriate tradesmen, including Machinists.

In the instant case, however, the work performed, while bearing some general similarity to some of the work proper to the Machinistsí craft, was not, in my view, "Machinistsí work" within the proper meaning of the term, or more particularly within the meaning of Rule 53.2. The work which was performed by Carmen was directed, not as a Machinistsí would be, at making the engine ready for service, but rather at permitting it to be moved to shops where Machinists and other tradesmen could effectuate proper repairs. The Carmen did not do "repair work" in this sense on the unit. The work was not carried out in the manner of a Machinist: parts were removed in some cases by cutting with a torch; limited grinding of a wheel was performed, not to make the wheel fit for service, but to make the unit transportable for repairs, where "real" grinding could be performed.

In the C.N.R. case, (November 25, 1980), [SHP-___] relating to a claim pursuant to Rule 53.7, it was said, at p. 9 of the award that:

Certainly [Machinists] will be required [in a wrecking crew] if machinistsí work is to be performed, and if the task is one of repairing an engine mechanically to make it operative that will, in general, be machinistsí work.

In the instant case, the work complained of was not work of repairing an engine mechanically to make it operative. Reference may also be made to the Ontario Northland (Leach) case, (February 2, 1976), [SHP-___] where a Crane Operator removed a fuel pump from his crane, and it was alleged that that work ought to have been assigned to a Machinist. It was said, at p. 4 - 5 of the award that,

Ö 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.

Again, in the present case the work complained of was not in the nature of repairs, but was simply done to permit the transportation of the unit to sites where repairs could be carried out. There was no wheel and tire turning and boring and no engine truck fitting as those expressions are properly used in relation to the Machinistsí craft, and it has not been established that this work, having regard to the nature and purpose of the tasks, and the circumstances in which they were carried out, was in fact work generally recognized as machinistsí work.

For all of the foregoing reasons, the grievance is dismissed.

DATED AT TORONTO, this 12th day of January, 1987.

(signed) J. F. W. Weatherill