In the aftermath of the Walkerton contaminated water tragedy, there was increased emphasis placed on the skills and qualifications of water and wastewater treatment plant operators in Canada. Although thousands of individuals are employed in the industry, there were no national occupational standards for these occupations.
A previous project had developed a draft standard, but there was a need to customize the standard across 4 levels of plant operations for both water and wastewater facilities, and then validate the resulting standards nationally.
Following initial research, a series of validation surveys were created and distributed across all regions of the country, and statistical modeling was used to identify the most critical tasks for each level and type of operation. The result is an extremely comprehensive tool for developing and verifying the competence of workers employed in these public-health critical facilities.