Stelco Mill Stops Production for Last 5 mins

I was working at Stelco in the No. 1 Bloom Mill in Hamilton, Ontario during the series. Due to our mills style of steel production, there were always guys on break so we asked management if we could rig an antennae on the roof for a TV in the lunch room. They agreed as long as we policed ourselves to prevent workers not returning to their job when it was their time. This arrangement worked out well throughout the series. Production and communication in the mill was via a telewriter at the soaking pits that was viewed in several locations throughout the mill. At approx. the 15:00 min mark of the third period of game 8 the telewriter announced that the rolling of steel was stopped and told everyone to go watch the game. At the time we thought that it was just luck that something had happened to halt production just near the end of the game but as we later learned, management in our mill was also caught up in the excitement of this series and ordered production to halt till the end of the game. This is significant in that in 1972, downtime in that mill cost Stelco $1000 per minute.

When one of the most important and biggest companies in Canada allows production to halt, even for 5 minutes, to watch a hockey game, it shows how much a part of Canada’s culture this series had become. I’m sure there are other similar stories across Canada from other industries waiting to be told.

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