Order to Mine to ‘Chair the Cage’ for Daily Inspections Upheld

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An MOL inspector ordered a mining company to “chair the cage”—that is, attach chains to a cage and release tension on the attached rope—for daily inspections. The company argued that it only had to chair the cage for weekly inspections. The Labour Relations Board noted that the OHS regulations require safety catches (called “dogs”) to be inspected daily for defects. The most reasonable way to examine the dogs properly was to chair the cage. Even if this process took 10-15 minutes, that’s not an unreasonable amount of time. And chairing the cage on a daily basis was an industry-wide practice, added the Board. So it affirmed the order [Vale Canada Limited v USW Local 6500, [2015] CanLII 19525 (ON LRB), April 10, 2015].