In the Air Force:
Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance; Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance Apprentice; Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance Craftsman; Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance Helper; Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance Journeyman
In the Army:
Cannon Crewmember; Combat Engineer; Construction Engineering Technician; Engineer Equipment Maintenance Warrant Officer; Petroleum Technician; Plumber; Quartermaster and Chemical Equipment Repairer; Unit Supply Specialist; Water Treatment Specialist; Wheeled Vehicle Repairer
People rely on ample supplies of clean water for survival, and on the proper treatment of wastewater to keep cities healthy and water sources unpolluted. Water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators manage the vital systems that treat water and wastewater. Water treatment plant and system operators oversee the treatment and distribution of fresh water, as it is pumped from wells, rivers, or reservoirs to water treatment plants. They monitor and maintain the equipment and control the processes that treat water to make it safe to drink. Wastewater treatment plant and system operators run systems that remove pollutants from domestic and industrial waste… from sewer pipe to treatment plant… until it is returned to streams and oceans… or is used for irrigation. Most operators work for local governments, while some work for utilities. Water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators work in conditions that are at times noisy and odorous. Slippery walkways, dangerous gases, and the potential of equipment to malfunction present significant hazards. They must prepare for emergencies and are well versed in the use of safety practices and equipment. Most work full time, and may be on call or work shifts around the clock to maintain operations, especially during emergencies. High school education and licensure are required; related coursework or an associate’s degree may be helpful. Long-term on the job training is typical.
What they do:
Operate or control an entire process or system of machines, often through the use of control boards, to transfer or treat water or wastewater.
On the job, you would:
Add chemicals, such as ammonia, chlorine, or lime, to disinfect and deodorize water and other liquids.
Inspect equipment or monitor operating conditions, meters, and gauges to determine load requirements and detect malfunctions.
Collect and test water and sewage samples, using test equipment and color analysis standards.
Engineering and Technology
product and service development
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
Safety and Government
public safety and security
law and government
Arts and Humanities
keeping track of how well people and/or groups are doing in order to make improvements
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
communicate by speaking
listen and understand what people say
Hand and Finger Use
hold or move items with your hands
keep your arm or hand steady
Ideas and Logic
make general rules or come up with answers from lots of detailed information
notice when problems happen
People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Industrial control software
Human machine interface HMI software
Supervisory control and data acquisition SCADA software
Data base user interface and query software
Data logging software
high school diploma/GED or certificate after high school usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are less likely in the future.