Sheetflow Construction Erosion and Sediment Control

December 25, 2019

Merry Christmas 2019

What do I do when I am on vacation?  Take videos of erosion control, of course!

Erosion control blanket was installed on this slope in southern Utah about 6 years ago. The biodegradable material has degraded. The photodegradable netting is still intact, seemingly just as strong as new. The slope is south-facing, the area gets over 300 days a year of sun; what’s the deal? How long will this stuff last in the environment? I only specify 100% biodegradable erosion control blankets; this is one reason why.

December 24, 2019

Shortening Slope Length with Coir Logs Showing Installation Methods

November 26, 2019

Track Walking Slopes Reduces Erosion

Want a simple and effective way to reduce slope erosion by up to 50%? Don’t back blade your slopes, track walk them!

October 31, 2019

Is This Silt Fence Necessary?

Perimeter Silt Fence Photo: David Jenkins

Overlooking the fact that this silt fence installation needs some maintenance, I wonder if it was ever really needed in this location? The slope grades to the fence are minimal and not very long, and the roadside ditch line is graded so that water will drain away from the road.

This type of silt fence installation is appropriate at the base of long, steep slopes, or if there is risk of sediment travelling off site. Also, all of the materials used will likely be land filled and not reused, including the wire backing and the “T” posts.

If this were my site, I would have installed orange safety fence with steel “T” posts, maybe with a compost berm along the base, on the project side. The safety fence can be easily removed and reused later, and the compost could be raked into the ditch line and hydroseeded.

June 4, 2019

Construction Erosion Control – Rough vs Smooth Slope

Dramatic example of the effect of rainfall on a smooth versus rough slope. The rough side was “track walked” using a small Caterpiller tractor, the other side was “back-bladed” smooth with the same tractor. Both test plots were prepared with the same soil and then sprayed with bonded fiber matrix (BFM) with seed and fertilizer.

February 15, 2018

Straw Wattles Reduce Erosion on Slopes

As water runs down a slope, it starts as sheetflow. If left unchecked, the water picks up velocity and erodes, forming small channels called rills. If the rills are left unchecked and the water flow continues to increase in velocity as it runs down the slope, it begins to form gullies. At this point, significant erosion is occurring. Straw wattles placed on a slope, on contours and at regular intervals, will intercept flowing water, reducing its velocity and reducing erosion. Straw Wattle Installation Drawing

January 20, 2018

Straw Wattles on Slope in Rain

Here is another example of the benefits of using straw wattles on a slope. For another example, go to last week’s post.

January 13, 2016

Inspecting Plastic Sheet Installed on Slope

Plastic sheet is a good, temporary practice you can use to protect soil from soil erosion and sediment loss from a slope. When used, you need to make sure that the plastic is installed so that all the clean rainwater that runs off doesn’t end up dirty because it ran onto bare soil. The clean water needs to be collected and piped away from the bare dirt, or the plastic needs to be run all the way to the bottom of the slope into a stable ditch covered with grass, erosion control blanket, rock or other soil erosion prevention measure.

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