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Spill Responder (Environmental Specialist 3)



Keeping Washington Clean and Evergreen
Protecting Washington State's environment for current and future generations is what we do every day at Ecology. We are a culture that is invested in making a difference. If you want to join a team that is highly effective, collaborative, has leadership that embraces the value of people, and believes in the fun factor, Ecology is a good fit.

Are you a problem solver that enjoys a challenge? Do you want to make a difference by making a positive impact on the environment? If so, then join a great team that shares your interests!

The Spill Prevention, Preparedness, and Response (SPPR) program within the Department of Ecology is looking to fill a Spill Responder (Environmental Specialist 3) position. This position is located in our Southwest Regional Office (SWRO) in Lacey, WA.

This position gives you the opportunity to be actively engaged in doing and/or directing the contaminant-control and clean-up of spills from oil and/or other hazardous chemicals.

We are looking for someone who has a strong Public Service ethic, enjoys a mix of field work and office work, comfortable working in a leadership role, flexible and willing to work non-standard hours and is motivated to make a difference by protecting human health and the environment.  

As an agency, our mission is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington's environment for current and future generations. We invest in our employees to create and sustain a working environment that encourages creative leadership, effective resource management, teamwork, professionalism and accountability.

To learn more about The Department of Ecology, please visit our website at and follow, like or visit us on LinkedInTwitterFacebookInstagram or our blog.
Local efforts... Diverse people... Statewide impacts

The mission of the Spill Prevention, Preparedness, and Response (SPPR) program is to protect Washington's environment, public health, and safety through a comprehensive spill prevention, preparedness and response program.

This position reports directly to the supervisor of a regional spill response unit and takes direction from a regional lead responder. The successful candidate will ensure rapid and aggressive response actions 24/7 to spills and releases of oil and hazardous materials into the environment and will clean up clandestine drug labs.

This position develops and maintains a high level of readiness to respond to pollution events and applies program policies, procedures and current standards of safety, technology, incident management and coordination to spill responses. This position also promotes the team structure used in the Spill Response section and ensures that personal behavior contributes to effective team work.

The successful candidate will interact with the public in potentially contentious and high stress situations and will be required to perform after hours, on-call duty.

This position is required to serve as a duty officer for after-hours pager duty on a regular rotation. Upon completion of the required training and successful medical surveillance baseline examination, the candidate will be assigned to the Emergency Spill Response Team and will be eligible for a 10% assignment pay.
Some of the key work activities of the Spill Responder position include: 
  • Conducts responses to spills of oil and hazardous substances, abandoned waste, fish kills and other environmental and human health emergencies.
  • Serves as initial incident commander and State On-Scene Coordinator for spills of petroleum products and hazardous materials on water and land.
  • Conducts operations to control, contain and cleanup spills, investigates the cause of spills and response actions taken by parties responsible for spills, directs environmental response contractors, and coordinates responses with appropriate private, local, state and federal representatives involved.
  • This position will open containers of unknowns, take samples, over pack and transport abandoned chemical wastes for final disposal.
  • Responders offer technical assistance and limited regulatory interpretation to parties involved in spill incidents and drug lab cleanups.
  • Prepares and completes all documentation and reporting associated with such incidents.
  • Adheres to agency policies, procedures and guidance for managing electronic files, paper records, and email in order to meet agency records retention and to be able to respond to requests for public records. Adheres to general IT security protocols.
  • Conducts safe responses to clean-up clandestine drug labs including sampling lab chemicals, separating chemicals by hazard class, preparing and packaging wastes for transport and delivering wastes to the designated facility for final disposal.
  • Attends mandatory and out-of-area training and demonstrates competency in site safety and spill response through SAFETRAC.
  • Participates at regulated facility and vessel drills.
  • Completes training and ICS credentialing for Incident Management Team (IMT) positions authorized by the supervisor.
  • Maintains personal work gear and spill response equipment and vehicles in a high level of readiness to conduct emergency spill responses.
  • Includes conducting routine maintenance on equipment and coordinating the purchase of equipment and supplies.
  • Initiates recommendations for formal enforcement in response to violations of spill prevention and response statutes and regulations.
  • Issues penalties for violations up to $5,000.
  • May include testifying before administrative hearings boards or courts of law and interacting with the State Attorney General's Office.
This position will remain open until filled. The initial review date of applications for this position will be September 4, 2019. To be considered for the initial review date, please apply online by September 3, 2019. The agency reserves the right to make an appointment any time after the initial review date.

This is a non-permanent position with an anticipated one-year timeframe.  

Please do NOT include your salary history.
Wage/Salary depends on qualifications or rules of promotion.

Required Qualifications:

A Bachelor's degree involving major study in environmental, physical, or one of the natural sciences


Two (2) years of professional level experience in emergency environmental response or hazardous materials management for environmental analysis or control.
A Master's degree in one of the above fields will substitute for one (1) year of the required experience. 

A Ph.D. in one of the above fields may substitute for two (2) years of experience.

NIMS Incident Command System (ICS) 100, 200, 700, and 800 course certification is required upon entry into the position. NIMS ICS training and certification can be obtained for free online at:

Desired Qualifications: 
  • Prior hazardous materials or emergency response experience.
  • This position requires 40-hour HAZWOPER Technician certification per WAC 296-824 and 296-843, with a current 8-hour refresher class. (This can be obtained after hire).
  • 80-hour HAZWOPER certification (WAC 296-824, and WAC 296-843).
  • Hazardous Materials Specialist Certification.
  • Other emergency response experience.
  • Experienced working in the Incident Command System.
  • Familiarity with the Northwest Area Contingency Plan.

Special Requirements / Conditions of Employment: 
  • Must possess a valid Washington State driver's license, be able to safely operate a motor vehicle, and maintain the license throughout employment.
  • Must pass employment medical surveillance physical and demonstrate the ability to wear respiratory protection and chemical protective clothing.
  • Must successfully pass physical agilities test. This position is required to maintain a personal level of fitness necessary to successfully pass periodic medical surveillance exams, which may include a stress test, as detailed in the Spill Response Procedures.
  • Must be able to clear a detailed background check required to obtain a Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC).
  • Must hold and maintain eligibility and certification (valid passport or enhanced driver's license) to permit travel to Canada in the event of a transboundary spill.
  • Must successfully complete initial SAFETRAC requirements other required training outlined in the Spills Program Policy and Procedures Manual within 6 months of entering the position.
  • Must be prepared for a minimum 3-day field deployment within 1 hour of notification.
  • Must notify supervisor immediately if the employee is unable to obtain any of the above required licenses or certifications, or if any of the above are revoked, expired or suspended for any reason.
  • Must notify supervisor immediately if any of the required training has expired.

Why work for Ecology?

Joining Ecology means becoming a part of a team committed to protecting and restoring Washington State's environment.

A career in public service allows you to help solve some of the most challenging problems facing our state, while keeping the health and financial security of you and your family a priority. We combine one of the most competitive benefits packages in the nation with a strong commitment to work/life balance.

Ecology employees may be eligible for the following:

Student debt and how working for Ecology can help
Employees may be eligible for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program, which forgives the remaining balance on your Direct Loans after you have made 120 qualifying monthly payments under a qualifying repayment plan while working full-time for a qualifying employer. See for more details.
*See the Benefits tab in this announcement for more information

 Supplemental Information
Application Instructions
Please include the following documents as an attachment to your application:
  • A cover letter describing how your experience, skills and abilities meet the required qualifications of this position.
  • A resume outlining your professional experience.
Please do NOT include your salary history.
Wage/Salary depends on qualifications or rules of promotion.
Please complete the applicant profile when applying for this position. Or, you may paste the text of your resume within the profile's resume text field.

Please read the supplemental questions carefully and answer completely. Incomplete responses, including "please see resume" may disqualify you from further consideration.

Department of Ecology employees, please make sure to answer the agency-wide questions regarding permanent status as a classified employee within the Washington General Service or Washington Management Service. Do not forget to select Department of Ecology as a response to question 2, and type your personnel ID number for question 3. If you are not sure of your status or do not know your personnel ID number, please contact Human Resources at (360) 407-6186.

Other Information 

If you need assistance applying for this job, please call Human Resources at (360) 407-6186 or e-mail Please do not call this number or send an email to this address to follow-up the status of your application. You can view the latest status of your application on your profile's main page.

If you have specific questions about the position, please email Alison Meyers Please do not contact Alison to inquire about the status of your application.

The act of submitting application materials electronically is considered affirmation that the information is complete and truthful. The state may verify this information and any untruthful or misleading answers are cause for rejection of your application or dismissal if employed.

This position is included in the Washington Federation of State Employees (WFSE) union bargaining unit for the Department of Ecology. 

The Washington State Department of Ecology is an equal opportunity employer. We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial, ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of disability, persons over 40 years of age, veterans or people with military status, and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply. Persons needing accommodation in the application/testing process or this job announcement in an alternative format may call (360) 407-6186. Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing may call the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.