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Best Management Practices
What are the most common sediment and erosion controls? 

There are a variety of devices for controlling sediment and erosion on active construction sites. Below are examples of common devices, or BMPs (Best Management Practices).

 Silt Fence/Super Silt Fence
  • Used to control the perimeter of disturbed areas.
  • Consists of geotextile fabric stretched across posts. Wire or chain link fence may support the fabric.
  • Lower edge of the fence is vertically trenched to create a barrier.
  • Used in small drainage areas to detain and prevent sediment from entering receiving waters.
  • Super Silt Fence is backed by steel fence posts and chain link and is used where a more robust fence is needed. 
Super silt fence in good condition
Super silt fence in poor condition

Compost Filter Logs
  • Composed of tubular mesh casing filled with composted hardwood mulch.
  • Mulch acts as a filter media by retaining sediment and filtering runoff.
  • Alternative to silt fence and can be used in hard to reach areas such as frozen ground or pavement.
  • Does not require trenching and can be used near tree roots.
Compost filter logs
Filter log in poor condition

Stabilized Construction Entrance (SCE)
  • Installed where vehicles, equipment and machinery enter and exit an active construction site.
  • Consists of 2-3” diameter stone with filter fabric placed beneath.
  • Designed to reduce the amount of sediment transported onto public roadways by vehicle traffic.
  • Reduces sediment tracking by removing dirt and sediment from tires or treads.
  • Routine maintenance and replacement is critical for proper function.
Stabilized construction entrance in good condition
Stabilized construction entrance in poor condition

Inlet Protection

  • Placed around an inlet or drain to trap and prevent sediment from entering inlet structures.
  • Prevents the silting-in of inlets, storm drainage systems, or receiving channels. 
  • Composed of filter fabric, gravel and stone with a wire mesh filter, block and gravel or a combination.
  • Secured filter logs may also be used.
  • Routine maintenance and replacement is crucial for proper function.

Inlet protection in good condition
Inlet protection in poor condition

Temporary Stabilization
  • Used to provide cover and stabilization to disturbed soils when they become inactive. 
  • Mandatory after 7 calendar days of inactivity temporary stabilization is mandatory. 
  • Consists of seed and straw (hay) mulch is the most common type of temporary stabilization.
  • Other types include mats or “rolled erosion control products” and sprayed on wood fiber and seed mixtures (hydroseeding).
Temporary Stabilization

Concrete Washout Structure 
  • Used to contains concrete washout and wastewater.
  • Provides location for ready mix concrete trucks to washout their hoppers, chutes and drums without depositing wastewater offsite or in an area onsite where it will runoff during a rain event. 
  • Composed of hay bails and plastic lining.
  • Routine maintenance, replacement and/or inspection for holes or tears is critical for proper function.
Concrete washout structure

Permanent Stabilization
  • All disturbed areas require permanent stabilization immediately after construction is complete in those areas. 
  • Composed of Permanent Seeding and Planting, Mulching, Geotextiles, and/or Sod Stabilization
  • Reduces the amount of sediment potentially leave your site. 
  • If vegetation fails to grow and thrive, soil test and amendment is recommended and even required on some plans. For more resources, visit the UMD Extension.
Properly stabilized soil after construction

Find more examples and specifications in the 2011 Maryland Standards and Specifications for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control.