Work in Washington Veterans Jobs

Job Information

City of Tacoma WA Sewer Equipment Operator in Tacoma, Washington

Sewer Equipment Operator


$34.71 - $38.26 Hourly


Tacoma, WA

Job Type



Environmental Services

Job Number



3/29/2023 5:00 PM Pacific

  • Description

  • Benefits

  • Questions

Position Description

The City of Tacoma's Environmental Services Department invites you to apply to join our team as a Sewer Equipment Operator. We believe everything we do supports healthy neighborhoods and a thriving Puget Sound, leaving a better Tacoma for all.

The Sewer Equipment Operator is a specialized position that requires knowledge and work experience in a variety of sewer maintenance equipment and vehicles that are used to clean, vacuum, and flush sewer lines and catch basins.

If the below list of personal traits sounds like you, then you are just the type of person we are looking for to join our team as a Sewer Equipment Operator.

  • Excellent attendance

  • Enjoy Swing Shift work schedule

  • Enjoy working both indoors and outdoors, in all types of weather conditions

  • Willingness to learn

  • Self motivated

  • Great customer service

  • Enjoy working as part of a team

  • Enjoy physically demanding and diverse job tasks

This recruitment is being conducted to create a civil service eligibility list that will be used to fill Sewer Equipment Operator vacancies as they occur for a period of one year.

The City of Tacoma posts separate Equipment Operator job announcements for each Department. Recruitment for all of these Equipment Operator jobs is conducted separately; we welcome and encourage you to apply for any and all positions you meet the minimum qualifications of, for hiring consideration in each Department.

Essential Functions:

  • Load and prepare trucks and equipment according to crew assignment. Transport workers and a variety of equipment, tools and materials to and from assigned job sites.

  • Clean, service and maintain assigned trucks and equipment in safe working condition.

  • Communicate with the public regarding sewer-related complaints; respond to and resolve emergencies as assigned.

  • Assist sewer crew workers as needed in the performance of various sewer maintenance and repair duties.

  • Set up work area and equipment as needed; set up traffic warning devices according to recognized safety procedures.

  • Assess sewer systems using a variety of electronic technologies and equipment.

  • Direct assigned personnel or crew to safely complete tasks.

  • Work safely and cooperatively with co-workers and the public.

Other Functions:

  • Maintain a variety of records, logs and lists, including completion of daily work orders/notifications, truck sheets and mobile dispatch technology.

  • Maintain an effective working knowledge of the City's sewer lines and locations.

  • Perform related duties as assigned.

Physical Requirements and Working Conditions:

  • Position requires lifting heavy objects, climbing and pushing up to 90 pounds.

  • Outdoor environment; subject to adverse weather conditions.

  • Required to respond to emergency call-outs during off duty hours.

  • Employees in this position may be subject to driving from site to site, heavy traffic and extreme weather conditions; fumes, raw sewage, confined space and excavation hazards, prolonged periods of noise and potentially hazardous materials.

City of Tacoma Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion

Tacoma's diversity is its greatest asset. Tacoma embraces its multi-cultural and multi-ethnic character. Communities of color and immigrant communities are fundamental to Tacoma's entrepreneurial spirit, workforce, and long-term success. In Tacoma, equity and empowerment are top priorities, meaning that all Tacoma residents must have equitable opportunities to reach their full potential and share in the benefits of community progress. One of our goals is for the City of Tacoma workforce to reflect the community it serves. We actively work to eliminate racial and other disparities and welcome candidates with diverse backgrounds and/or multicultural skill sets and experiences. Our goal is for Tacoma to be an inclusive and equitable place to live, work, and play.


An equivalent combination to:

Graduation from high school or GED,


Two (2) years as a sewer worker (experience in repairing, maintaining, and cleaning storm and sewer lines) or equivalent experience including training or experience operating specialized sewer equipment.


Valid Washington State Class A Commercial driver's license with N (tanker) endorsement at time of appointment with maintenance thereafter. Position is subject to random CDL drug testing.

Desired Qualifications:

  • Work experience operating dump trucks, Vactor trucks and back cutters.

  • Willing to work Swing Shift work schedule.

Knowledge & Skills

  • Operation, care and maintenance of sewer maintenance trucks/equipment and accessories.

  • Requirements of operating equipment in a safe manner.

  • Applicable traffic laws, ordinances and rules.

  • Maintain routine records and prepare routine reports using proper record-keeping techniques.

  • Health and safety regulations.

  • City's sewer system locations using GIS mapping and City of Tacoma GovMe/ESRI websites.

  • Safely operate a variety of sewer maintenance trucks and equipment.

  • Operate, service, and make minor repairs on equipment.

  • Understand and follow oral and written directions.

  • Develop and maintain interpersonal relationship skills.

  • Maintain records and reports including wireless devices and electronic record keeping.

  • Establish and maintain cooperative and effective working relationships with others.

  • Observe legal and defensive driving practices.

  • Perform heavy manual labor.

  • Work independently with little direction.

  • Quickly learn City streets and sewer system locations.

  • Communicate effectively both verbally and in writing using tact, patience and courtesy.

Selection Process & Supplemental Information

To be considered for this career opportunity:

Please apply online through the City of Tacoma's website and attach a detailed resume and cover letter describing your experience, training, motivations, and expertise as it relates to the responsibilities of this position. Individuals must meet the minimum qualifications to progress in the examination process.

In order for your application materials to be considered, all information must be submitted by the closing date and time listed on this job announcement.

Candidates who are eligible for Veteran's Preference scoring criteria must attach a copy of their DD-214 member copy 4, (proof of military discharge form) at time of application, to be eligible for review for Veteran's Preference points, with redacted birth date and social security numbers.

Examination Process:

This is a competitive selection process. Applicants who meet the minimum qualifications will have their responses to the Supplemental Questions #9-11 reviewed and scored by a committee of subject matter experts, as the Experience and Training Test . It is the responsibility of the applicants to adequately describe all pertinent experience and training. Please make sure you read the questions and provide complete informative answers, including your roles in the position and key activities. DO NOT respond with "see resume" in lieu of answering these questions; this will result in a failing score.

Applicants who pass the test will be placed on an Eligible List for potential interview and hiring consideration. Candidates invited to interview will also participate in a practical skills assessment to demonstrate their ability to operate sewer equipment.

Any vacancy that comes up within a one year period of time will draw from candidates on the Eligible List for potential interview selection.

Per City of Tacoma Personnel Management Policy #170, the City of Tacoma is a drug-free work environment. Appointment is subject to passing a pre-employment background check and references check, a pre-employment medical exam, drug and alcohol screen and physical ability test.

This position is covered by a Labor Agreement between the City of Tacoma and Teamsters Local 313. New employees must successfully complete a nine-month probationary period prior to obtaining permanent status in this classification.


The City of Tacoma offers a generous program of employee benefits:

  • Outstanding working conditions and an exceptional quality-of-life environment.

  • Medical coverage for eligible employees, spouses and dependents, including children up to age 26.

  • Vision care with VSP for employees and eligible dependents enrolled in the Regence PPO medical plan with vision benefits.

  • Dental coverage for eligible employees and their elected dependents, including dependent children up to the age of 26.

  • Deferred compensation allowing tax-deferred savings as authorized under Section 457 of the IRS Code.

  • Personal time off.

  • Paid holidays.

  • A great pension plan.

The City of Tacoma

Tacoma is a mid-sized urban port city that sits along the Puget Sound with a population of over 210,000. The third largest city in the state of Washington, it is a diverse, progressive international gateway to the Pacific Rim.

The City of Tacoma supports a healthy work/life balance, continuing education programs, leadership pathways, wellness incentives and a total rewards benefits program. We welcome you to take a look at our website and discover how the City of Tacoma can make your next career move part of our combined destiny:

The City of Tacoma believes that each employee makes a significant contribution to our success. This job description is designed to outline primary duties, qualifications and job scope. The omission of specific statements of duties does not exclude them from the position if the work is similar, related or a logical assignment to the position.

Communication from the City of Tacoma:

We primarily communicate via email during the application process. Emails from and/or must be placed on your safe domain list to ensure that you receive notifications in a timely manner. As a precaution, you may also want to check your junk email folders.

In order for your application materials to be considered, all information must be submitted by the closing date and time listed on this job announcement.

For assistance with the NEOGOV application process, or questions regarding this job announcement, please call Human Resources at (253) 591.5400 before 4:00 pm of the closing date of the job announcement.

The City of Tacoma provides excellent medical, dental and vision plans for the whole family; paid holidays and paid leave; participation in the Tacoma Public Employees' Retirement System (alternate plan for Police/Fire); continuing education and advancement opportunities and a growing variety of City-sponsored health and wellness opportunities and incentives.

Medical Coverage: For eligible employees and their families, including domestic partners and dependent children age 26 or younger.

Dental Coverage: For eligible employees and their families, including domestic partners and dependent children age 26 or younger.

Vision Coverage: For eligible employees and their eligible dependents.

Paid Leave: City employees are entitled to received paid holidays, sick/vacation leave or personal time off (PTO), depending upon union affiliation and appointment type.

Insurance Plans: Employees are covered by a long-term disability plan. Short-term and expanded long-term disability insurance plans are also available to employees. The State Industrial Insurance Act also covers employees.

Deferred Compensation: Income can be set aside on a pretax basis and invested for supplementation of normal retirement income.

Retirement: All employees of the City, except members of the Police and Fire services, Tacoma Rail and certain project employees, are included in the Tacoma Employees' Retirement System. Information on the Tacoma Employees' Retirement System can be found at or by calling (253) 502-8200.

Other Employment Information

Direct Deposit: Employees are paid on a bi-weekly schedule by direct deposit.

Salary Increases: Based on satisfactory job performance, the City provides for a regular progression of salary increases for most classifications according to the salary schedule.

Union Affiliation: Many job classifications are covered by union security provisions which require union membership, dues, or payment of equivalent service fees.

Note: The provisions of this job announcement do not constitute an expressed or implied contract. Any provision contained herein may be modified and/or revoked without notice.


This supplemental questionnaire will be used to determine whether you meet minimum qualifications for this position and will be used as a tool to screen applications prior to an in-depth look at your application materials. Do NOT refer to your resume in lieu of answering these questions. INSTRUCTIONS: Answer the following questions as truthfully and accurately as possible. Any sign of deliberate misinformation or intentional exaggeration will result in disqualification from the examination process and possible bar from future employment opportunities with the City of Tacoma. Please indicate "Yes" to show that you have read and understand these instructions.

  • Yes

  • No


    Are you a high school graduate or equivalent, such as a General Education Degree or Home Schooling certificate?

  • Yes

  • No


    Check ONE box below that most closely matches your job experience.

  • 2 or more years' experience as a Sewer Worker (repairing, maintaining and cleaning storm and sewer lines).

  • 2 or more years' experience in a job that is equivalent to a Sewer Worker

  • Less than 2 years' experience in a job similar to Sewer Worker

  • No related job experience, but willing to learn


    The successful candidate for this position will need to have a Washington State Class A Commercial Driver's License with Tanker Endorsement by their first day of work if offered the job.

    Do you currently or will you have a valid Washington State Class A Commercial driver's license with N (tanker) endorsement at time of appointment if you are selected for this job?

  • Yes

  • No


    This position has both day and swing shift work schedules. Are you available to work swing shift?

  • Yes

  • No


    This position is physically demanding and requires you to lift heavy objects, climb, and push up to 90 pounds and to work outdoors in all types of adverse weather conditions. Please check yes to acknowledge that you are aware of the working conditions.

  • Yes

  • No


    Please list any certifications and licenses you hold that are pertinent to this job classification. If none please type N/A.


    INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE EXPERIENCE AND TRAINING TEST: Questions 9-11 are the experience and training test that will be used to establish the eligibility list. These questions will be scored by subject matter experts who will not have access to any of your application materials, and will provide scores based solely upon your answers to these questions. Your answers must stand on their own merit.

    DO NOT RESPOND WITH SEE RESUME in lieu of answering these questions; this will result in a score of 0 points and you will fail the test. Raters will not have access to your resume or application at this step in the process. Your score on the experience and training test will solely reflect your responses to questions 9-11.

    For questions 9-11, make sure you read the question and provide complete informative answers, including your roles in the position and key activities.

    Please indicate "Yes" that you have read and understand the instructions for questions 9-11.

  • Yes

  • No


    Of your related work experience, how would you describe your role with and around heavy equipment?

  • I have no experience working with or around heavy equipment

  • I have no direct experience with or around heavy equipment, but I am interested in learning

  • I have worked with and around light equipment

  • I have worked around heavy equipment

  • I have worked operating heavy equipment

  • I have extensive experience with operating and working around heavy equipment


    Please check the boxes of all of the below listed equipment that you have training on and verifiable work experience operating.

  • Dump Trucks

  • Vactor Trucks

  • Back Cutters

  • High velocity and vacuum combo trucks

  • Reel trucks

  • Continuous Rodding machines

  • Semi-Tractor Trailer

  • Front End Loader (over 20,000 GVWR)

  • None of the above but willing to learn


    In detail, describe your experience operating equipment such as those described in the job announcement: Vactor Truck, Back Cutters, Dump Trucks, Continuous Rodding Machines, etc.

Include equipment type, your primary responsibilities, employers, and dates of employment. If you do not have any experience with a type of equipment, indicate which pieces of equipment with which you don't have experience. If you do not have any experience in this area, respond with "N/A".


Please tell us how you learned about this job opening.

  • Job Interest Card notification

  • Internet search

  • Professional organization

  • Community organization

  • Military organization

  • Union job posting

  • City of Tacoma employee

  • Online job board posting

  • Word of mouth

  • Other


    Please provide specific information regarding how you learned about this job opening. Thank you, your feedback will be used to evaluate our success reaching the public and refine our methods for future job postings.


    Military Veterans: In order to be assessed for eligibility for Veteran's Preference points, you must upload a copy of your DD-214 Member Copy 4 to this job announcement. Did you upload a copy of your DDForm 214, Member Copy 4 to this job application? Non-military do not need to reply to this question.

  • Yes

  • No

    Required Question


City of Tacoma


Human Resources Department 747 Market Street Tacoma, Washington, 98402-3764





Please verify your email address Verify Email