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Municipal Technical Advisory Service (MTAS)

Original Author: MTAS
Date of Material: 09/27/2002

Solid waste--Personnel
Solid waste--Landfills

Landfill Operator

Reviewed Date: 05/27/2021
Job description for the position of Landfill Operator.



This employee is responsible for the efficient and effective operation of the landfill. The employee is under the general supervision of the Superintendent of Streets, Sanitation and Parks. Instructions to the employee are general, however, many aspects of the work are guided by standing instructions or state and federal laws. Independent judgement must occasionally be used in order to complete tasks.


The employee will routinely operate a variety of heavy equipment such as a bulldozer, backhoe, and heavy trucks.
The employee will also use a variety of light equipment and mechanical tools, some of which may be dangerous.
The employee typically works both indoors and outdoors and may be exposed to extreme conditions of weather.
In addition, the employee may be exposed to excessive noise, chemicals, fumes, or toxic substances.


Operates a variety of heavy and light equipment.
Responsible for efficient and effective operation of the landfill from site preparation to finished grade.
Estimates the availability of landfill space and plans for the efficient use of space.
Responsible for the excavation of dumping pits, placement of trash and garbage, compaction and the covering of such materials through the use of bulldozers, scrapers, heavy dump trucks and related equipment.
Loads solid waste and deposits solid waste in the landfill. Covers waste with required amounts of dirt.
Ensures the filling and leveling of the landfill to the proper grade.
Accounts for solid waste entering the landfill.
Keeps accurate records regarding the operations of the landfill and completes reports for a variety of agencies.


Assists the water, sewer, and parks departments through labor, technical assistance, or the operation of equipment.
Maintains equipment and performs repairs.
Seeds and maintains the landfill in a clean and sanitary condition.
Determines the placement of temporary roadways on the landfill site.
Works to control wind-blown litter.
Recommends the purchase of equipment and supplies.
Performs other duties as required.


Extensive knowledge of the operations and maintenance of heavy equipment.
Ability to use a variety of mechanical tools in the maintenance and repair of equipment.
Extensive knowledge of the modern procedures and methods used in the development, maintenance, and operation of a sanitary landfill.
Extensive knowledge of local, state, and federal laws and regulations pertaining to the operations of a landfill.
Knowledge of survey techniques and the ability to use survey instruments to conduct surveys on or near landfill sites.
Ability to maintain records and complete a variety of reports.
Ability to carry out written or oral instructions.
Ability to establish and maintain an effective working relationship with the general public, other employees and individuals from a variety of groups and agencies.

Any combination of training and experience equivalent to:

A valid State of Tennessee driver’s license.
Graduation from a standard high school.
At least 2 years extensive experience in the operation and maintenance of heavy equipment, preferably with experience in surveying and the operation of a landfill.