Focus On Water
Drinking Water
Field Services & Training
Operator Certification and Training

Operator Certification and Training

The effective operation of a Public Water System (PWS) by a properly trained and licensed water operator involves daily operational decisions that directly impact the water quality and quantity in the system, and therefore, public health. The Operator Certification program is responsible for ensuring that all PWSs in Nebraska have a properly licensed operator in charge of the system. This is accomplished through:
  • Development of water operator licensure training
  • Review/approval of continuing education
  • Coordination with the department’s licensure unit on the issuance, reinstatement and renewal of water operator licenses
  • Water Operator Training Courses
FS&T staff develop, schedule and instruct water operator training courses for the purpose of preparing water operator license exams. Staff also administer and score examinations for pass/fail determinations. Result notifications are sent to examinees, along with their eligibility for licensure.

Water Operator Continuing Education

Water operator licenses expire on December 31 of each odd-numbered year and require a minimum of 10 hours of continuing education to be renewed. The Operator Certification pro­gram reviews and approves continuing education hours available from training providers, as well as compiles continuing education hours obtained by water operators for audit purpos­es during license renewal periods.

Nebraska Water Operator Training Coalition

The operator certification program facilitates bimonthly meetings of the Nebraska Operator Training Coalition to discuss training issues/concerns/priorities and coordinate training op­portunities provided by Coalition members. Members of the coalition include:
  • Midwest Assistance Program
  • Nebraska Rural Water Association
  • Nebraska Section American Water Works Association
  • League of Nebraska Municipalities
  • Nebraska Central Community College

Water System Security

The FS&T is responsible for promoting the security and resiliency of Public Water Systems (PWS) in order to ensure safe and reliable delivery of water to the public.

These responsibilities include:
  • Oversight of the allocation and use of Security Grant funds, provided by the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, to improve the PWS security/emergency response capabilities
  • Review and approval of required PWS Emergency Response Plans
  • Review and approval of annual PWS Critical Information Emergency Contact Lists
  • Training of PWS personnel regarding emergency preparedness and emergency response planning, including Disaster preparedness, National Incident Management System Incident Command System and Continuity of Operations Plan.
  • Maintenance of the PWS Emergency Operations Plan

Useful links and resources