Maverick Construction

Pioneers of mulching technology in western Canada

Land access
Access to land is a most pressing issue for those who don’t have it. It is easily taken for granted that the roads that traverse our nation, and resources eked out of our withholding land were once inaccessible, and nature’s inclination is to be overgrown with dense forestry and bush.

Maverick Construction, based in Saskatchewan, is on the forefront of clearing and mulching technology. Headed by Ron Bodnar, the company specializes in customised clearing projects in western Canada to allow access to otherwise inhospitable and inaccessible regions for resource mining, transportation and agricultural sectors.

Seismic programs are used to support a gamut of industries. Exploration companies to assist in locating oil and gas reserves that require overgrowth and heavily forested areas to be cleared. Municipalities require Maverick to widen roads and improve intersection lines of site. The forestry sector uses mulching for the prevention of fires, to re-seed areas. Maverick provides invaluable support to those industries in need of the equipment, technology and operators that can cut brush through densely forested areas to lay out access lines. The lines allow gas and resources companies to do the surveillance on the subsurface geology.
Says Bodnar, “In mulching, there are so many varied applications. Our clientele is very diverse.” The diversity of clients is met with equally diverse and custom specification to all the equipment, depending on the needs of the clients and the requirements of the job. “We are Saskatchewan’s premier mulching company and pioneers,” he says. This is a quantifiable assertation; at Maverick, they do a “terrific amount of specification to our equipment. We will conform our equipment to a variety of weights, sizes and horsepower. Different types of mulchers will do different jobs.” As an example of the customization of Maverick’s technology, the team manufactured a personalized mulching unit that will reach out 22 feet. “We have perfected it,” Bodnar continues.

Maverick is also “100 per cent self contained,” meaning they own their own transport company, semis, service trucks and service bodies. “Everything is all compliant.” Bodnar creates the breadth of experience among his team to their success and efficiency.

The machinery used by Maverick can go in and cut lines with minimal disturbance. Depending on clients’ specifications, Maverick will use specialized mulchers, or tree-salvage equipment with varying width and horsepower and “various sized terrains in every imaginable condition all over western Canada.” To that end, all the Maverick machines are equipped with global positioning systems (GPS), so that “we can be guided 100 per cent with the machines themselves. We can be in the middle of the bush and have a 3D program take us to an exact point.”

Do not disturb
It is a rare endeavour in business where the result of moving, manipulating or clearing land for industrial purposes is beneficial for both the land and the industry. Maverick provides a service to both its clients and the environment. Mulching improves the underlying soil and enriches the soil surface with shredded and composite material. The Earth Management Association and the Forest Engineering Research Institute of Canada (FERIC) ascertains that mulching does not disrupt wildlife, has the ability to leave select trees unharmed and can be done in fragile land applications. Bodnar explains that this environmental focus is the highest priority for his company. “Our work is really about addressing the environmental issues. We want to make sure that we comply with government environmental standards, but beyond that, we want to exceed the environmental standards of our clients, which are most times even higher.”

Mulching is an environmentally friendly way of clearing land. With it, the need to burn cleared debris is negated, as is the need to pay for hauling, dumping or burying. Instead, specialized mulchers are used in what is known as low-impact seismic clearing, so called because it leaves a minimal legacy on the terrain.

Brush and trees are essentially mulched down to the ground level and root systems are left undisturbed.

Mulching offers numerous benefits over alternative land clearing methods. There are no debris piles, no burning required, and no stumps to remove post treatment, unless discing is planned. The mulch provides a soil erosion barrier that reduces water runoff and increases water infiltration. “We respect the environment,” says Bodnar. “If you need to have tree reduction, this is the best way to do it. Part of our goal is to educate organizations and the public on the benefits of mulching. We do demonstrations and people can’t believe the difference in mulching, rather than having things ripped up or burned.”

Safe and secure
Maverick’s reputation in the industry is backed by its outstanding safety record. Of course, the company reaches government and industry standards, but the emphasis on exceeding those permeates the business. Maverick is COR certified—something extremely valuable in the industry—has its IRP 16 (Industry Regulation Practises), and is I.S.N. approved. To date, Maverick has zero safely incidents in its history as a company, which Bodnar boasts, “is really something I am proud of. Not many companies can say the same.” Safety is a “daily concern, and everybody’s responsibility,” which it needs to be to get those results.

Biodegradable oil
Bodnar is a forward thinking businessman. Bodnar is constantly striving to remain at the top of his game. “We go further with our units. To be competitive, you need experience operators and equipment that exceeds expectation.” Bodnar relies daily on his team, and also on the company’s innovative technology: mulchers using biodegradable hydraulic oil. This oil eliminates harm to the environment, should there be a spill. “Concerted effort was made to specialise the oil to the machine, but we have been using this oil successfully for two years.”

“My philosophy,” says Bodnar “is, you may be on track, but if you just sit there, you will eventually be run over. That stands for the initiative you make in your company, your safety and your technology. Everything changes. We can’t rest with being ‘good’. You’ve got to keep moving.”

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