Work for Water

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Pump Station Operator

Because water sector agencies move huge volumes of water, they try to place storage towers and treatment plants at a high location. That way, gravity creates the pressure to move the water downhill to most of the customers or used water to the wastewater treatment plant. But sometimes the water must be moved uphill, so the water sector agency has pumping stations that lift the water. The pumping station uses a pump, which is a huge motor with a blade that pushes the water to a higher level.

The operator of a pumping station must:

  • check the operation of the pumps, the flow of the water, and the volume of water it is moving;
  • understand the characteristics of the movement of water (called hydraulics); and
  • be an expert in heavy machinery.

Education: On-the-job-training
Certificates, licenses: No
Entry-level opportunities: Yes
Desirable traits and skills: Enjoys working with heavy equipment; may operate several pumping stations, so must be willing to travel from place to place during the shift