Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 41


Saturday afternoon. He had gotten some
calls about low pressure and discovered
that the well he normally used was down.
His only storage tank was very low and
the clearwell was empty. He had a backup
well but wasn't sure how to get started
correcting the problem. Upon arriving,
I discovered that we weren't going to
be able to get the main well going. We
switched to the backup well only to find
that only half the flow was coming into the
plant. I then discovered a broken check
valve was letting much of the water go
into the bad well. After a few hours, we
had the backup well going and were filling
the tank before the town ran out of water.
Then there was the time that I
was woken by the phone at 4:00 a.m.
The operations specialist on the other
end was frantically telling me turbidity
readings. After getting him to calm down,
I discovered that his plant was putting
out high turbidity water and had to be
shut down. A day and a half later, we had
finally corrected all of the problems and
were putting out good water. Luckily they
had an emergency connection with a
neighboring system.

personnel. The small system also incurs
the expense of training the new employee.
If systems will pay a competitive wage
and managers will occasionally recognize
operations specialists for a job well done,
systems will be able to retain these
valuable employees.

How do you think rural
water systems could
operate more effectively?
Rural water systems need to make sure
their personnel receive the proper training.
Operations specialists need regular training
to keep up with ever changing regulations
and learn about the latest procedures
and products to help in performing their
duties. Some utilities only allow operations
specialists to attend training when it is
required to meet the continuing education
for licenses. This is not enough to stay
up-to-date. Office staff also need training
to ensure they are performing their duties
properly. Tennessee now requires utility
district board members to take mandatory
training, and it has helped them learn their
responsibilities and limitations. This type
of training could also be useful for mayors
and city councils.
Systems also need to embrace
technology. Technology changes fast
in today's world, and things such as
radio read meters, computers, SCADA
systems, newer lab analysis equipment
and tools can help the systems operate
more efficiently.

What advice would you
give to a young person
who wants to embark
on a water career?
What's the best advice
you could give to rural
water systems?
Pay your staff a fair wage. I received a
call from a small town mayor a few years
ago. He informed me that all of the town's
employees were quitting at the end of
the week. The bad thing was, he couldn't
blame them, since they could flip burgers
and make more money. He said the board
wouldn't raise their pay. I understand that
funds are scarce in many small utilities, but
retaining a well-trained and experienced
staff is important to the operation of the
system. Many operations specialists start
out at small utilities and work a few years
until they obtain their licenses. Often
a larger system will offer more money
and the small system finds themselves
starting over with untrained, inexperienced

Get a good education. High school
courses in math, biology and computers
will help with a career in the water
industry. Many colleges now offer degrees
in water and wastewater technology. There
are scholarships available specifically for
those wanting to have a career in water.
If college isn't in your plans, technology
centers offer many courses that can
be useful, especially for those wanting
to work in the maintenance part of the
industry. Develop a good work ethic.
Operation specialists often need to be
self-motivated and may need to take
care of various situations with little or no
supervision. Talk to people in the industry.
Operations specialists in your area may be
able to guide you along your way and offer
helpful advice. A job in the water industry
can be a very fulfilling career choice. In
fact, it can be much more than a job, it can
be an adventure. ‚óŹ
RURAL WATER

41



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016

The Latest Drinking Water Innovations
Potable Reuse of Water: A View from Arizona
Getting the Public on Board with Your Potable Water Reuse Plan
Recapturing Revenue from Water Loss
Water Depletion and the Customer
Boardroom Courtesy
From the President
Finance: Audit Requirements
Technology: The New System that Uses Sound to Alleviate Water Shortage
Emergency Management: Creating a Drought Response Plan
A Day in the Life of a Circuit Rider
Regulatory Update
Throwing My Loop: An Old Familiar Tune
Index to Advertisers/ Advertisers.com
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - cover1
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - cover2
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 3
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 4
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 5
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 6
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 7
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 8
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 9
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 10
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - From the President
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - The Latest Drinking Water Innovations
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 13
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 14
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 15
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 16
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 17
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Potable Reuse of Water: A View from Arizona
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 19
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 20
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 21
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Getting the Public on Board with Your Potable Water Reuse Plan
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 23
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 24
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 25
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Recapturing Revenue from Water Loss
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 27
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 28
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 29
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 30
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Finance: Audit Requirements
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 32
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 33
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 34
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Technology: The New System that Uses Sound to Alleviate Water Shortage
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 36
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Emergency Management: Creating a Drought Response Plan
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 38
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 39
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - A Day in the Life of a Circuit Rider
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 41
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 42
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Water Depletion and the Customer
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 44
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Boardroom Courtesy
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 46
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 47
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Regulatory Update
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 49
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 50
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Throwing My Loop: An Old Familiar Tune
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 52
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 53
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - Index to Advertisers/ Advertisers.com
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 55
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 56
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 57
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - 58
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - cover3
Rural Water - Quarter 3, 2016 - cover4
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