Lock and Dam Operator
Department of the Army - Buffalo, NY

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Civilian employees serve a vital role in supporting the Army mission. They provide the skills that are not readily available in the military, but crucial to support military operations. The Army integrates the talents and skills of its military and civilian members to form a Total Army.

About the Position:

This is a full time, permanent, seasonal Lock and Dam Operator position. Seasonal employment means annually recurring periods of work of less than 12 months each year. Seasonal employees are permanent employees who are placed in nonduty/nonpay status and recalled to duty in accordance with preestablished conditions of employment.

The full performance of this position is WY-08 after completing all requirements of the Inland Marine Transportation System (IMTS) Lock Operators Certification program.

Incumbent operates electrically, electronically, and/or hydraulically controlled lock or lock and dam gates, control valves, and other associated equipment required for passage of a variety of private and commercial traffic through the lock structures and/or maintenance or required pool levels. Performs other installation repair and maintenance tasks requiring application of trade skill knowledges.

Permanent Change of Station (PCS) costs are not authorized, based on a determination that a PCS move is not in the best interest of the Government.

Who May Apply:

All US Citizens
  • Pre-employment/annual physical required
  • Pre-employment/annual drug test required
  • Shift work is required
  • Temporary Duty Travel (TDY) - up to 10%

DUTIES: This position is being filled at the entry level of WY-5426-05. As the incumbent completes the training program, promotions will be made at management's discretion.

In this developmental position, you will follow a formal training plan. Entry level is at the WY-5426-5 level. The training program involves the following duties:
  • Signal/direct vessels desiring entry their approach into the lock.
  • Operate electrical and/or hydraulic controls for filling and emptying valves to raise and lower water level and ensures that turbulence created thereby will not cause damage to vessels or structure.
  • Provide advice and assistance to vessel crew members during maneuvering and mooring of vessels in lock chamber and, during multiple lock, moves non-propelled vessels from lock chamber.
  • Note and report all malfunctioning of gates, valves, and operating machinery or important incidents occurring during lockages.
  • Perform a variety of routine maintenance and repair tasks associated with the lock structure, dam, related equipment and grounds in order to keep the structure good appearance and working condition.
  • Operate a variety of power driven hand tools and uses a variety of hand/mechanical tools to accomplish the maintenance tasks.
  • Ensure assignments are carried out in compliance with appropriate policies, procedures and regulations.
  • Check work occasionally and detect malfunctions.

QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED: Screen Out Element : No specific length of experience is required. However, your application packet must show sufficient experience and training to indicate that you can perform the work of the position without more than normal supervision. Applicants will be rated on a points system based on responses to the below Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs). Applicants must obtain a minimum of 2 points on the screen-out element to be found qualified for the position.

Ability to do the work of a Lock and Dam Operator WY-5426-05 without more than normal supervision. Applicants must meet this screen out element to be considered further.

To meet the screen out element applicants should document experience in the following:

· Knowledge of Equipment Assembly, Installation, Repair, etc.

· Operation of Lock and Dam Equipment and Machinery

· Technical Practices (theoretical, precise, artistic)

· Use of Measuring Instruments

· Ability to Interpret Instructions, Specifications, etc. (other than blueprint reading)

· Dexterity and Safety

Eye and hand coordination for operating various controls and handling lines while observing traffic and personnel, during crane lifting operations, lifting dam gates, etc. There is standing, stooping, bending, occasionally lifting in excess of 50 pounds, stretching, working in cramped positions, handling or maneuvering bulky items or equipment, and general continuous moderate to arduous physical activity.

Preponderance of work is performed outside, subject to extremes of temperature and weather. There is exposure of injuries associated with working in restricted areas (occasionally in cramped and/or uncomfortably hot or cold areas), from falling objects, from working with electrical power tools and wiring or other equipment, from working with normal manual tools, and from falls while working on lock walls, dam service bridge, etc. While possibility of drowning exists as result of falls while working around water, hazard is practically eliminated through observance of safety procedures and use of safety equipment. During maintenance operations, is occasionally exposed to unpleasant fumes, dust, etc.

Other Requirements:

· Male applicants born after December 31, 1959 must complete a Pre-Employment Certification Statement for Selective Service Registration.

· Personnel investigation may be required.

· Required to provide proof of U.S. Citizenship.

· One year probationary period may be required.

· Direct Deposit of Pay is required.

· Pre-employment physical may be required. Annual physical is required.

· Temporary Duty Travel (TDY) may be required 10% of duty time.

· Testing Designated Position : Incumbent of this position is subject to all the provisions of Civilian Drug Abuse Testing Program, including periodic random drug tests.

HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED: Your application package (resume, supporting documents, and responses to the questionnaire) will be reviewed to verify that you meet the basic eligibility and qualification requirements. Your responses to the questionnaire will be used to evaluate your relevant personal, educational, and work experiences.

Basis for Rating : Qualified candidates will be assigned to one of three quality categories: Best Qualified, Highly Qualified and Qualified. Veteran's preference eligibles are listed ahead of non-preference eligibles within each quality category.

Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP). The Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP) provides eligible displaced Federal competitive service employees with selection priority over other candidates for competitive service vacancies. If your agency has notified you in writing that you are a displaced employee eligible for ICTAP consideration, you may receive selection priority if: 1) this vacancy is within your ICTAP eligibility, 2) you apply under the instructions in this announcement, and 3) you are found well-qualified for this vacancy. Well-qualified is defined as meeting all of the minimum qualification standards and eligibility requirements as well as possessing skills that clearly exceed the minimum qualification requirements for the position. Under competitive delegated examining, an ICTAP eligible will be considered well-qualified if they attain an eligibility rating of 90 or higher, not including points for veterans' preference. You must provide proof of eligibility with your application to receive selection priority. Such proof may include a copy of your written notification of ICTAP eligibility or a copy of your separation personnel action form. Information about ICTAP eligibility is on OPM's Career Transition Resources website at http://www.opm.gov/ctap/index.asp .

BENEFITS: The Department of Defense offers excellent benefits programs some of which may include:
  • Comprehensive health and life insurance
  • Competitive salaries
  • Generous retirement programs
  • Paid holidays, sick leave, and vacation time
  • Flexible work environment and alternate work schedules
  • Paid employment related training and education
  • Possible student loan repayment
  • Payment of licenses, certification, and academic degrees as applicable
  • Bonuses, incentives, and awards as appropriate for the job.


    • Selection is subject to restrictions resulting from Department of Defense referral system for displaced employees.

    • The Department of Defense (DoD) policy on employment of annuitants will be used in determining eligibility of annuitants. The DoD policy is available at http://www.cpms.osd.mil/ASSETS/E8AB932EA1E44617BAC7222922E42A62/DoDl140025-V300.pdf.

    • In accordance with section 9902(h) of title 5, United States Code, annuitants reemployed in the Department of Defense shall receive full annuity and salary upon appointment. They shall not be eligible for retirement contributions, participation in the Thrift Savings Plan, or a supplemental or redetermined annuity for the reemployment period. Discontinued service retirement annuitants (i.e. retired under section 8336(d)(1) or 8416(b)(1)(A) of title 5, United States Code) appointed to the Department of Defense may elect to be subject to retirement provisions of the new appointment as appropriate. (See DoD instructions 1400.25, Volume 300, at http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives .)

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