Drinking Water Operator Training – Very Small System Operator

Information about a training course for operators of very small drinking water systems.

In the United States, 80% of all public drinking water systems serve 500 or fewer people and are classified as "Very Small Systems". Certified water operators are required by most public water systems in the country, from complex municipal drinking water supplies to restaurants and mobile home parks with their own water sources and distribution systems. In Massachusetts, water operators can earn licenses from VSS up through Grade 4, providing a stable career ladder for people seeking a profession with a wide range of responsibilities related to the delivery of safe drinking water.

This 18-hour course will prepare students to sit for the Massachusetts Drinking Water Operator VSS exam. Scores of at least 70 on the exam will allow students to qualify for an operator-in-training license, the first step toward receiving a full license.

Course material will introduce students to the water supply field and the responsibilities of certified drinking water operators. Topics covered will include water quality sampling, wells and source protection, water distribution (pipes, storage tanks, hydrants, valves, meters), safety, water treatment, reporting, and drinking water regulations. Students will learn to use basic math formulas for calculating water storage, pressure, flow, and water usage. Three optional day-time field trips will also be scheduled to give students more exposure to water operations and potential career opportunities.

Coordinated by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) and the Massachusetts Coalition for Small Systems Assistance, this course will be taught by a variety of drinking water professionals, including experienced water operators, trainers, and MassDEP staff.

For more information please contact Michael Maynard at 508-767-2735


Practice Exam for the Very Small Water System Certification Examination

The Association of Boards of Certification offers a Very Small System Practice Exam.  Click here for more information.

Contact   for Drinking Water Operator Training – Very Small System Operator

Help Us Improve Mass.gov  with your feedback

Please do not include personal or contact information.