2021 Reflections: We Crushed It!

Moreton Bay Recycling trucks parked in the concrete recycling yard, near large concrete blocks.

Can you believe it’s November already? As 2021 quickly draws to a close, we wanted to reflect on the year we’ve had, welcome some new staff, fill you in on our Christmas/New Year plans, and talk about what’s next for our (very busy!) region.

First up, let us introduce you to some new team members.

Welcome to the MBR family!

Collage showing new Moreton Bay Recycling staff. Clockwise from the top left: Sonja, Corey, Shane, and Greg.

We’ve had a really busy year, and with that comes new hands on deck to help with customer service, crushing, loading, delivery, and more. Here are four new faces in 2021:

Corey Fritz (Nitzy)

Corey is our Loader Operator extraordinaire. When he’s not at work he loves hanging out with mates and 4wding on the beach, and he thinks he’s a guru on Sportsbet.

Corey is also Charlie’s grandson, another one of our Loader Operators (albeit with a few decades’ more experience) who joined us in 2020. A tiny Corey would once sit in a bassinet at Charlie’s feet while he used to load trucks – a bit hard to picture that now!

We only made the family connection after hiring Corey. But as many of our customers know, the trucking world is a small world!

Gregory Chaplin (Greg)

Greg is our new Excavator Operator. He loves spending time in his shed and has a passion for timber sculpting. He spends his downtime finding old stumps and lumps of wood in the bush and new subdivisions, as well as old wooden furniture. Then he uses a grinder and chainsaw to carve them into unique works of art.

By the way, a very happy birthday to Greg who is 65 this week! 🎂🥳

Shane Loy

A brilliant Truck Driver, Shane loves his truck and treats it as his own. Once you get to know Shane, one thing becomes abundantly clear: he is passionate about vehicles! During his 40-something years, he’s already owned 69 vehicles, including four cars in the 7 months since he joined Moreton Bay Recycling. The latest car he bought is a 4wd and he just recently took it along the beach for his first beach 4wding experience.

Sonja Wells

Sonja joined us in September to help manage our Accounts and Office Administration. She’s been handling things beautifully so that it all runs smoothly behind the scenes! Sonja’s also quite the creative – when she’s not at work, she loves to take photos and paint.

Night crushing to boost productivity

Truck breaking up large pieces of concrete at night time.

We’ve been night crushing for a year and a half now and have really settled into the routines.

Four of our operators alternate their schedules to do two weeks of night shifts, followed by two weeks of day shifts. In the beginning, it was challenging, but they got used to it and the schedule is working well now.

As a result of crushing at night, we’re much more productive in the yard, which means we’re able to crush more product. It’s easier to get things done when there’s fewer distractions, like trucks coming in and going out, or five guys going on smoko at the same time. And during the day, it’s less chaotic – we’re able to focus on serving our customers instead of producing product.

Another benefit is that we can do all our maintenance on equipment during the day when it’s not in use. And if we have a breakdown during the night shift, we can do the repairs and fix everything the next day so it’s ready to go again the next night. That means minimal equipment downtime and very few disruptions to our crushing schedule.

Going with the flow on concrete volumes

Large piles of concrete rubble, ready for crushing and recycling.

This year, one of the biggest challenges for us was the fluctuating volumes of product. As many of our customers know, that’s the nature of being in the construction industry – there are a lot of ups and downs, impacted by both demand and weather. And in some cases, COVID restrictions. We’ve been quite fortunate up here in Queensland that construction wasn’t put on hold due to lockdowns like it was in other states.

But we are experiencing a lot of wet weather at the moment which has caused some job sites to close. When this happens, our raw stockpile does get diminished, but the sun always comes out and our raw stockpile starts to grow again.

We’ve learned that we need to go with the flow and that fluctuations are simply a part of the business. We will continue to make hay (or crush concrete) while the sun shines!

Stay tuned: So much happening!

Moreton Bay Recycling’s crusher machine, shown in the early morning light.

It’s been a big year, but there’s so much more to come for Moreton Bay Recycling, the local area, and the industries we contribute to.

Moreton Bay and Brisbane are set to continue their current trajectory with significant growth in the region. A number of large projects, new developments, and a growing population mean there’ll be increasing demand for local contractors and materials in the next decade. And as more companies and government organisations embrace more sustainable practices, we anticipate that concrete recycling (and using recycled concrete products) will soon become the norm.

One thing’s for sure: 2022 is going to be a big one!

Wrapping it up

Large, yellow “GO SLOW” sign.

I think it’s safe to say one thing about 2021: despite a number of challenges, our wonderful team crushed it!

We’re grateful to our customers for supporting us in our third year (since opening in Narangba) and wish you all a very happy holidays,

Hilary Dold, General Manager

P.S. Looking for some recycled concrete products or planning to drop concrete waste with us in December/January? Make sure you check our holiday hours (updated in our Quick Reference Guide). We’re closed from midday on 24 December and open again from 6 am on 10 January.

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