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Hydroelectric Plant Operator (6463)

Hydroelectric Plant Operator

California State Personnel Board Specification

  • Schematic Code: PM20
  • Class Code: 6463
  • Established: 02/17/1966
  • Revised: 12/04/1990
  • Title Changed: --


Under supervision, to operate and control aqueduct facilities and hydroelectric generating and pumping plants; and to do other related work.

Typical Tasks

Operates pumps, generators, auxiliaries, switches, valves, aqueduct facilities, and turnouts from unit control panels, plant control rooms or remotely from control centers; monitors or operates a digital process controller for actual control and/or optimization of plant and aqueduct output and flow; performs, either manually or remotely, high voltage switching within an operating zone; keeps log records of operations and readings; implements power, water, and pumping schedules and makes power and water calculations as required; assists the Senior Hydroelectric Plant Operator in all phases of systemwide operations; prepares and places clearance tags, verifies protection, and issues clearances; familiarizes himself with all code and switching orders and operating and safety procedures in order to take prompt and appropriate action to meet any operating emergency; trains and supervises Junior Hydroelectric Plant Operators and Hydroelectric Plant Operator Assistants in manual and remote operation; maintains constant communication with dispatchers in Sacramento, and other zone control centers.

Minimum Qualifications

Either I


Completion of a recognized apprenticeship as a hydroelectric plant operator. (Apprentices who are within six months of completion of their apprenticeship may be admitted to the examination, but they must present evidence of completion of their apprenticeship before they may be appointed.)



Experience: Either


1. One year of experience in the California state service performing the duties of a Hydroelectric Plant Operator Assistant and successful completion of the Hydroelectric Plant Operator Assistant training program of the Department of Water Resources. or


2. Two years of experience in the California state service performing the duties of a Junior Hydroelectric Plant Operator.




3. Two years of operations experience in one or a combination of the following: hydroelectric generating plants; large (at least 25,000 hp) pumping plants; high voltage switching and clearances in large (at least 100 mw) steam plants. (Experience in substations or switching yards of at least 230 kv may be substituted for one year of the required experience.)

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of: Functional characteristics of generating and pumping units and auxiliary machinery, busses, switches control circuits, valves, checks, reservoirs, spillways, metering and other water control devices; fundamentals of electricity, hydraulics and hydrology.


Ability to: Read and write English at a level required for successful job performance; operate manual and automate control systems; instruct and supervise unskilled assistants.

Special Personal Characteristics

Normal sense of smell and normal hearing.

Additional Desirable Qualification

Education equivalent to completion of the twelfth grade.

  Updated: 6/3/2012
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