June 14, 2022

Featured Face: Maxwell Spurn – Rigger, Headworks

Although he grew up in Quesnel and Kelowna, Maxwell Spurn is a long-term resident of Fort St. John.  For seven years he was a Technician at an Oilfield Services Company.  He specialized in fusing HDPE Pipe and also worked as a Rigger setting up water management services at Hydraulic Fracturing sites.

It was good work, but involved a lot of travel, and the work schedule was erratic, so Max was looking for something different.  As a resident of FSJ he was aware of the activity at Site C.  Then an AFDE employee moved into the basement of the house he was living in.  Over the next little while, they had some conversations about the work, and one day he asked if AFDE was hiring.  He was told that we were always looking for good people – especially local residents.

Max was hired just a little while later, in April 2021.  Years ago, while still living in Kelowna, he had started a Carpentry apprenticeship, so he was assigned as a Labourer on a composite Carpentry crew.  He soon volunteered to be on the Emergency Response Team, and when a need arose for riggers, he was placed there given his experience in the oilfield.

When he’s not at work, Max enjoys the outdoor activities the North has to offer.  He goes quadding, snowmobiling, shooting – what he calls “regular redneck activities”.  He is also a hunter, and he enjoys cooking the game he harvests.

Being a Rigger is an exciting job that Maxwell really enjoys.  He goes by his full name on-site because there are too many “Matt”s and accurate & precise radio communication between the Riggers and Tower Crane Operators is of paramount importance – there can be no confusion between “Max” and “Matt”.  Of course there’s no confusion when the TC Operators decide instead to use his newly acquired nickname: “Legend”.  He needs to always be aware of his surroundings and keep his head on a swivel.  Maxwell considers that challenge to be an opportunity.  By being near all of the action, he is able to observe what different crews are doing, and always offers to step in and help if he has a spare moment.  In this way he is continuously learning more about the job.

The thing that Maxwell values the most in his work environment is the camaraderie that he experiences within AFDE.  His favourite lifts are the Pour Decks – because there is a lot of interaction with the different crews as they prepare to lift and land the load.  He finds his coworkers to be very easy to get along with and appreciates how everyone works together in a high-stress environment to achieve common goals.  He is really proud to be part of the Team and to witness the incredible progress.

Maxwell’s advice to anyone considering working on a major project is: “Never stand still, always ask questions and always be ready to lend a hand.”


Thanks Maxwell, for bringing your positive energy to the site!