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> Issue 74 > Page 33 - From Italian Lives, Cape Breton Memories: From the Memoirs of Thomas Cozzolino

Page 33 - From Italian Lives, Cape Breton Memories: From the Memoirs of Thomas Cozzolino

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1999/6/1 (442 reads)

WORKPLACE HEALTH AND SAFETY How safe are you at work? Reach new heights in workplace health and safety Each workday in Nova Scotia, up to 400,000 people go to work. About 80 of them get hurt, 20 so badly they can't come back the next day. Whose responsibility is health & safety? Under the OHS Act, Nova Scotian employers and employees must take responsibility for their own health and safety as well as others. In addition to the work? place expertise, government maintains a system of laws and actively enforces those laws with a knowledegable and competent staff. It does not stop there, there are more resources in the community that can help make your workplace a safe and healthy place to work. If you require assistance or would like more information, contact us at: 1-800-9LABOUR. T "From now on you will have full charge of the excavation at the Coke Ovens; do the work as you see fit." I went back to work, and made many changes to suit myself. I first changed the position of the steam shovel; I placed it on the short side of the loading bank, and moved the track to the upper side so that we could take up the cut without having to shovel by hand. At the same time, I ordered wood for my trestie. As soon as the 100-foot trestie was built, I started on the fill using only eight men. Now the train could be uiiloaded in a few minutes, instead of taking half an hour. In the first week, I had taken out about four times more material than previously. I used dy? namite to blast the frozen ground at the site, and this brought the cost down by over half. After finishing the excavation at the Coke Ovens, I asked the man? ager if he would give me a con? tract for the exca? vation at the Open Hearth and the Blooming Mills. He said tills was not pos? sible, because it was under a six- month contract to a company from Boston. When I heard how much they were charg? ing for the work, I said, "Mr. Mox- ham, that is a pretty high cost for construction NO' ''coim tow* nm' ?? Km. Be ': excavation." He agreed, but added, "I cannot do anything; they still have another 3 1/2 months on their contract." Isaid, "It would pay you to give tiiem even $50,000, and let tiiem go; we can make it up in less than two months." Two days later Mr. Moxham called me into his office. He had spoken to the head of the construction company, and they had agreed to accept the offer to cancel their contract with the Dominion Iron and Steel Company. I took full charge of the excavation for the Blooming Mills and the Open Hearth, plus a spur of railway connecting the Blast Furnace to the Coke Oven plant. When I took the work, I had every worker and foreman against me; they thought tiiat I was going to discharge them. That, however, was not my way of doing work; anyone who did his duty was my friend. It was not very long before they changed their minds, and did everything for me. Of course, I did fire a few of the leaders and foremen for not doing their duty. After that everything went well. By the end of the first month, the costs were 45% lower than they had been the previous month.... The General Manager was well pleased with both the work and the cost.... Meanwhile, together.... [ had moved my family to Sydney, and we were happy In January of 1905, an EngUsh company was starting to develop a mine at Broughton, 18 miles from Sydney, Nova Scotia. Although the pay was low, I took two sections for grading. At the time I signed the conttact, there was no snow on the ground. On the 26th day of January, however, it started to snow, and it continued to snow for three weeks. I could not make much headway. Meanwhile, I had wired a friend in Liverpool, Nova Scotia to load all of my equipment and ship it to Sydney. He loaded three cars consisting of dump carts, wheelbarrows, picks, shovels, etc. But, as there had been a big storm, the railway had put my cars in a siding near Halifax, and evidentiy forgot them as they were snowed under. When my cars finally ar? rived on February 26th, I began to work in earnest. My confract was for grading earth; it did not give a price for "rock.' I had told the 24 HOUR I Professional Monitoring ALARM & SECURITY SYSTEMS ' CTRONICPROTECTIO 484 Grand Lake Rd. Sydney, N.S. 564-9408 MRMOUR /'/transportation systems ARMOUR TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS, one of the most reliable names on the road, is here to deliver. It's a network comprised of four leading companies in the highway transportation industry...Annoiir Transport...Drury Transfer...Diamond's Transfer and Pole Star Transport. Maritime owned and operated, servicing Atiantic Canada and beyond. Armour Transportation Systems is dedicated to getting the job done right. 'Pale'ear ArmOUr Diamond' DRURYS SYDNEY 149 York Street, Sydney, N.S. BIP 6B6 Phone 539-4185 'Toll Free 1-800-565-4186 • Fax 562-0205 General Man? ager that tiiere were rocks in my cuts at the time I signed the conttact. He had said, "Go ahead, and I will pay you for the rock." Every day we found more and more boul? ders, some as large as 45 cu? bic feet. So I told my fore? man to keep track of all the boulders. When we had finished the cuts, I put in a claim for around 800 cu? bic yards of rock. The Gen? eral Manager would not pay for this work. I told him tiiat I would not ac? cept a final set- tiement, until he had paid me for the rock. A few days af? ter the Presi? dent of the company ar? rived from England, I 33
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