The TRA CReWSers of the Water Environment Association of Texas, took top honors at the 28th annual Operations Challenge competition. The fun-filled, high-energy event took place at WEFTEC 2015—the Water Environment Federation’s 88th annual technical exhibition and conference—in Chicago.

Team members David Brown, Dale Burrow, Jake Burwell, Raudel Juarez, and Steve Price competed against a record-high 44 hardworking teams from the U.S., Canada, and for the first time, Germany. As one of the most engaging events on the exhibition floor, Operations Challenge is a unique and fast-paced test of the essential skills needed to operate and maintain wastewater treatment facilities, their collection systems, and laboratories—all vital to the protection of public health and the environment.

Over the course of nearly three decades, Operations Challenge has steadily grown from the original 22-team event to this year’s 44-team, two-division format. Teams are judged on the best combination of precision, speed, and safety. The winners are determined by a weighted point system for five events including collection systems, laboratory, process control, maintenance, and safety. Winners in both divisions include:

Division 1
First Place: TRA CReWSers
Water Environment Association of Texas
Trinity River Authority, Dallas, Texas

Second Place: L.A. Wrecking Crew
California Water Environment Association
Los Angeles Sanitation District, Carson, Calif.

Third Place: Jersey Devils
New Jersey Water Environment Association
Cape May County Utility Authority, Cape May, N.J.

Division 2
First Place: Motley Poo
Chesapeake Water Environment Association
Maryland Environmental Service, Millersville, Md.

Second Place: Commode Commandos
Rocky Mountain Water Environment Association
Littleton-Englewood Wastewater Treatment Plant, Englewood, Colo.

Third Place: Blackwater Bruisers
Water Environment Association of South Carolina
Renewable Water Resources, Greenville, S.C.