Sediment and Erosion Control

Background

Development and redevelopment converts former pervious surface soils to non-pervious man-made surfaces, which then produces increased runoff volumes and flows. The physical problems resulting from this increased runoff includes, but are not limited to, flooding, soil erosion, sedimentation, and the pollution of lands and surrounding water bodies.

Construction sites must adhere to the Town of Bluffton’s Stormwater Ordinance as outlined in the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) and the Stormwater Design Manual and utilize appropriate Best Management Practices (BMPs) to ensure control of soil erosion.

Enforcement

Construction site inspections for sediment, erosion, and stormwater runoff controls are conducted by an inspector, bearing proper credentials and identification, to ensure that the construction adheres to the approved plans to curb and/or remediate the physical effects of land disturbance. 

Any deficiencies or non-compliance issues identified during a Town inspection will be reported to the project contractor, on-site supervisor, and/or engineer for addressing. Some corrective measures may require immediate, 2-5 days’ time frame depending on the nature of the violation. 

Failure to address concerns or implement and corrective measures will result in the issuance of Notices of Violation, Stop Work Orders and/or fines. To find out more information about the enforcement of the sediment and erosion control program, see the Erosion and Sediment Control Enforcement Response Plan (ERP).

BMPs that have frequent failures can be required to be replaced with alternative control methods. All changes should be communicated with the Watershed Management Division and documentation in the On-Site Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (OS-SWPPP). 

Sediment and Erosion Control Inspection Photos - Pass or Fail 

For examples of a "passed" or "failed" BMPs in the sediment and erosion control world, see below.

Concrete Washout Station - Fail

Education

The Town of Bluffton continually works to educate various audiences on the proper installation, maintenance, and placement of all sediment and erosion control BMPs. Below are several sediment and erosion control resources developed by the Town.  

Inlet Protection: Guidance for Installation and Maintenance Video

This video on the installation and maintenance of inlet protection was prompted by the ever increasing issue of severe roadway flooding resulting from improperly installed and maintained inlet protection. Per South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) standards, as outlined in their Best Management Practice (BMP) Handbook & Field Manual, inlet protection must be installed to allow for overflow during rain events. Although inlet protection may be pulled during severe roadway flooding to alleviate safety concerns, if inlet protection is properly installed and maintained, flooding should not even occur. 

This video primarily focuses on the installation and maintenance of curb inlet protection. As a reminder, depending on the type of inlet protection selected, the tube must be modified and installed to create an overflow for stormwater during rain events. If you elect not to install curb inlet protection in a manner than allows for overflow, you may be required to utilize a different type of curb inlet protection. For a list of the approved BMPs for inlet protection, please reference the SCDOT’s Qualified Products List #58.

For additional resources or to schedule a field visit, please contact the Town’s Stormwater Inspector, Andrea Moreno, at 843-706-4581 

Educational Handouts

The Town of Bluffton’s Watershed Management Division developed two (2) handouts to educate builders, subcontractors, and developers on the importance of stormwater BMPs at active construction sites. These handouts are:

  1. Sediment and Erosion Control Practices for Single Family Home Builders and 
  2. Stormwater BMPs for Contractors and Subcontractors.