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City of Somerville Special Heavy Motor Equipment Operator/Water Public Works Laborer (8 openings) in Somerville, Massachusetts

The Special Heavy Motor Equipment Operator/Water will work in the construction, maintenance, and operation of the water system. Responsible to ensure that all safety practices and measures, including but not limited to, work zone safety, confined space entry and excavation safety are adhered to and that personal protective clothing and equipment are utilized. Operates motor equipment in a professional and competent manner and with care taken to perform the work safely and with efficiency.

Essential Functions:

Performs skilled tasks involving but not limited to installation, maintenance, repair, and replacement of pipes, fire hydrants, valves, mains, services, and other appurtenances that are part of the water system. The incumbent is responsible for carrying out various other assignments essential to the Water and Sewer Department and shall have a thorough knowledge of the principles and practices of water system related maintenance and some experience with installing and repairing asphalt and cement. Performs other related duties that may be assigned.

  • Operate equipment including but not limited to front-end loaders, backhoes, gate and valve exercising equipment, compacting equipment, and skid steer loaders.

  • Respond to emergencies as directed and assist in emergency response activities as related to system failures and/or crisis situations.

  • Digs, braces, backfills and tampers excavations.

  • Installs and repairs asphalt and concrete.

  • In the case of breaks and failures, is responsible for determining the cause, locating problem area, shutting off water service, and using whatever methods, tools, and procedures that are necessary to complete the task in a safe, proper, and proficient manner. Also responsible for responding to flooding conditions caused by the City water system by entering account holder premises and basements to check their status or perform meter maintenance

  • Performs the installation and repair of water mains, service valves, gates, hydrants, and any other appurtenances using whatever methods, tools, and procedures are necessary to complete the task in a safe, proper, and proficient manner.

  • Read and follows specifications on engineering blueprints, sketches, and diagrams of the water and sewer system.

  • Locate, operate, repair, and maintain underground utilities and controls related to the water infrastructure.

  • Performs minor maintenance functions on equipment including but not limited to checking and maintaining air pressures and fluid levels, lubrication of mechanical joints by applying necessary greases, and routine cleaning of vehicle exterior and interior.

  • Performs daily vehicle condition inspections and reports as required by law or by Department policy.

  • Takes lead role toward customer response and problem resolution as related to water system issues and report such issues to Foreman.

  • Assist with cross-departmental Water and Sewer emergencies as required.

  • Responsible for the safe collection and transport of water samples in compliance with all Environmental Protection Agency and State DEP safe drinking water regulations.

  • Report any emergencies to a Foreman.

  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with superiors, co-workers and the general public.

  • Use electronic work order system.

  • Trains personnel as necessary.

Recommended Minimum Requirements:

Working knowledge of the following

  • Principles and practices pertaining to the correct, proficient, and safe operation of equipment and assigned vehicles.

  • Applicable Municipal and Department rules and regulations pertaining to safe operation of assigned motor equipment.

  • Rules, regulations, and applicable laws relative to job-related safety.

  • Principles and practices for the operation and maintenance of drinking water systems.

Demonstrated ability to

  • Recognize conditions requiring maintenance and repair.

  • Exercise proper professional and technical judgment.

  • Operate equipment with a high degree of skill and efficiency.

  • Read and follow specifications in engineering blueprints and specifications as they pertain to municipal water and sewer systems and recognize the need for referral to determine safe excavation.

  • Enter and make observations in manholes, pump stations, sewer lift stations, trenches and other confined spaces.

  • Work alone without close supervision.

  • Comply with all related Federal, State, City, and Department policies and provisions.

  • Frequently lift, move, push, pull, and/or carry up to 50 lbs.

  • Occasionally lift, move, push, pull, and/or carry up to 100 lbs.

  • Balance, stoop, bend and crouch; reach and handle tools with both hands.

  • Work under varying weather conditions.

  • Perform duties of this job description for scheduled and unscheduled overtime.

Entrance Requirements

  • Graduation from a high school, vocational school, or GED.

  • Minimum of one year of experience in the operation and maintenance of a public water supply or related construction experience.

  • Must possess a valid Commonwealth of Massachusetts Class B license with air-break endorsement.

  • Must possess Massachusetts Hoisting License with 2B restriction within 120 days of hire.

  • Must obtain a D1 Water Distribution license issued by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Division of Professional Licensure within 6 months of hire.

  • Must have a responsible driving record.

Work Environment:

Work requires agility and physical strength, ability to function in close quarters, and is subject to outside environmental conditions, including wet, hot and cold weather. Worker is subject to noise, vibrations, hazards and atmospheric conditions including fumes, dust and air contaminants.

Physical and Mental Requirements:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the position’s essential functions.

Physical Skills: Position requires standing/walking most of the day, lifting/carrying, pushing/pulling, climbing, reaching, twisting, turning, kneeling, bending, crouching and stooping in the performance of daily activities. The position requires near and far vision and acute hearing, the ability to maintain heavy physical exertion for long periods of time, operate hand and power tools, navigate rough terrain, move in or about construction sites.

Motor Skills: While performing the duties, employees are regularly required to use oral communication skills and handle tools and equipment. The position requires balancing, pushing, pulling, grasping, feeling and repetitive motion to complete tasks.

Visual Skills: Visual acuity is required to operate motor vehicles and heavy equipment.

Hours: Full Time (Monday – Friday 7am to 3:30pm)

Salary: $53,580.80 annually plus benefits

Union: SMEA Unit B

FLSA: Non-Exempt

Date Posted: March 22, 2024

City of Somerville residents are especially encouraged to apply.

The City of Somerville is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, age, national origin, disability or any other protected category. Women, minorities, veterans, and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

Auxiliary aids and services, written materials in alternative formats, and reasonable modifications in policies and procedures will be provided to qualified individuals with disabilities free of charge, upon request. Persons with disabilities who need auxiliary aids and services for effective communication (i.e., CART, ASL), written materials in alternative formats, or reasonable modifications in policies and procedures in order to access the programs, activities, and meetings of the City of Somerville should please contact Adrienne Pomeroy at 617-625-6600 x 2059 or

Pre-Employment Requirements for All Employees:

  • MA Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) clearance

  • Completition of Conflict-of-Interest Law Education training for municipal employees

    Overview of Total Rewards:

  • 4 weeks annual vacation (for non-union positions) union positions vary by contract

  • Medical insurance through the Group Insurance Commission (GIC) - 80% of premium costs paid by City

  • Dental coverage low and high plans through Cigna

  • Vision care through Vision Service Plan (VSP)

  • Long term disability through Sun Life

  • Group and voluntary life insurance through Boston Mutual

  • Health Care and Dependent Care flexible spending through Benefit Strategies

  • Deferred compensation plans through a choice of three vendors

  • Free, confidential services through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provided by E4Health

  • Annual cancer screening & wellness release

  • Somerville Retirement Pension System

  • Tuition reimbursement

  • MBTA pass program

  • FREE Blue Bikes membership

  • Eligible employer for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF)

Benefits listed are for benefits-eligible positions and the above information is meant to be a general overview of the benefit programs offered by the City of Somerville and not a binding contract.

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