Come By Chance oil spill warning letters upset union workers

United Steelworkers members held an emergency meeting Wednesday night, after 10 members received warning letters from North Atlantic Refining.
About 150 workers from the refinery met Wednesday night in Arnold's Cove to discuss their concerns.

United Steelworkers union members aired their concerns in an emergency meeting Wednesday night, after North Atlantic Refining sent some workers warning letters following the January oil spill at the company's Come by Chance oil refinery.

North Atlantic issued the written warnings to 10 workers, referencing their undue care and attention on the job, a move the company calls "progressive discipline."

The oil spill on Jan. 4 resulted in about 10 barrels of light crude leaking out of a pipe into Placentia Bay.

Boyd Bussey, a staff representative with the union, told CBC the workers feel they weren't to blame for the spill.

Bussey said one of the workers who received a warning letter was on vacation at the time, and not near the refinery.

The union said the matter will now be handled through its grievance procedure, according to its collective agreement with North Atlantic.