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Creating forest sector solutions

Erosion and sediment control:

Handbook introduction

One vision
Global competitiveness

Clayton Gillies RPF, RPBio

Senior Researcher
Forest Road Engineering

Handbook overview: beginning to end

Funding contribution

Through an Advisory Committee
process, members and partners
identified erosion and sediment
control as an area of high
Initial cooperators and strong
support originated in Alberta.
Soon took on a national focus.

Field days to gather input and determine needs

Weyerhaeuser Company Limited, Nordegg, AB
Millar Western Forest products Ltd, Whitecourt, AB
Canadian Forest Products Ltd., Grande Prairie, AB
Daishowa-Marubeni International Ltd., Peace River, AB

Field days provided an

excellent opportunity for
participants to interact

Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries Inc., Lac La Biche, AB

Tolko Industries Ltd., Lumby. B.C.

Participants represented
the resource industries,
Provincial government,
and Federal government

Steering committee (blue) & National reviewers

Juri Agapow, Diashowa-Marubeni International Ltd., AB
Roy Crawford, Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries Inc., AB
Tony Gaboury, Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries Inc., AB
Aaron Highmoor, Millar Western Forest Products Ltd., AB

Brian Martell, Canadian Forest Products Ltd., AB

Tom Plouffe, Millar Western Forest Products Ltd., AB
Don Sarin, Weyerhaeuser Company Limited, AB
Andre Savaria, Alberta Sustainable Resource Development, AB

Christopher Spytz, West Fraser Mills Ltd., AB

Robert Thomson, Diashowa-Marubeni International Ltd., AB
Kathryn Collet, Department of Natural Resources, NB

Mike Kelly, Stora Enso Port Hawkesbury Ltd, NS

Mark Partington, FPInnovations, Feric Division, QC
Gary Wearne, Domtar Pulp and Paper Products Inc., ON
Eric Young, Department of Natural Resources, NL

Handbook layout: three main sections

Section1: introduction, planning, & riparian areas

Introduction to the types of erosion

Wind erosion and mass

wasting not covered

Know your soils

Coarse fragments:
- are easily identified
- not many erosion issues

Fine earth portion:

- harder to identify
- has higher erosion potential

1 - Introduction

Know your erosion hazard

Table 5 shows:
By soil type
By slope

Layout and field notes:

Terrain or field
indicators i.e. long continuous
slopes vs. benches
and breaks

Control vs. repair: it is less costly to plan ahead and
identify techniques to control erosion than conduct repairs.
Communication: discus plans with regulatory agencies and
the field crews early in the process.
Phasing: plan the various phases of construction to occur
closely to reduce the erosion potential of exposed soil.
Erosion and sediment control plan: from basic to complex
depending on size of activity and known hazards.

1 - Planning

Planning: phasing example

Initial surfacing applied

soon after road built

Additional surfacing
1 - Planning

Planning: phasing example

Felled ROW still gives
cover to soil

Felled and hauled

ROW leaves soil

Planning: erosion and sediment control

Riparian areas
Last natural line of defense against sediment entering a
Protect water quality by maintaining stream bank and
channel stability
Offer a filtering function for sediment-laden water arriving
from upland areas

1 Riparian areas

Riparian areas
Narrow width of ROW
felling when
approaching a stream
Establish buffers

Do not build roads

adjacent to a stream
Older roads may need to
be armored, upgraded or

Section 2: principles and practices for e&s control

2 - Preventing erosion: ground preparation & cover

Key strategies for preventing erosion include:

Keep the amount of exposed soil to a minimum

Maintain existing ground cover
Cover exposed soils soon after exposure
Machine operating techniques should be considered
Keep surface rough as compared to smooth

Minimize exposed soil: by amount and time

2 - Preventing erosion: ground preparation and cover

Minimize exposed soil: by amount and time

Maintain existing vegetation

Bridge was constructed
while maintaining riparian
attributes below structure

Use of barriers or obstacles

in the field can clearly mark
disturbance limits

2 - Preventing erosion: ground preparation and cover

Maintain existing vegetation

Provide cover for exposed soils: Live

2 - Preventing erosion: ground preparation and cover

Provide cover for exposed soils: Inert

2 - Preventing erosion: ground preparation and cover

Use of straw

Machine operating techniques

Machine tracking can

result in 10% less

2 - Preventing erosion: ground preparation and cover

Rough and irregular surface

2 - Preventing erosion: ground preparation and cover

2: Containing and collecting sediment

Strategies to promote deposition:
Slow the flow or
Increase roughness
Use of a flocculent

2 Containing and collecting sediment

Time for suspended sediment

to fall 1 cm in water

Slowing flow or movement

Silt fence

All will require maintenance

and removal of deposited
2 Containing and collecting sediment

Check structure

Sediment pond / basin

Will require periodic


Meandering flow path

promotes longer detention
2 Containing and collecting sediment

2: Diverting flows & seepage: upland water mgt.

Upland water can cause severe
rills and gullies on exposed slopes.
Important to identify source areas
and incorporate actions in an E&S
control plan.

3: Practical applications: roads and crossings

Ditch armouring
Permanent versus
temporary armouring

Consider shape of ditch and

vegetation establishment

3 Ditches

Ditch armouring (plus)

Check structures

3 Ditches

Check structure spacing

3 Ditches

Ditch turnouts
Disperse ditch flow into the
Spacing will vary by terrain
and hazard

3 Ditches

Ditch bypass and double ditching

Neither are all that
Very site specific

3 Ditches

Cross ditch and cross-drain culvert

Not suitable for main haul roads.
Spacing correlated to slope, soil
type, and terrain.

Locate to allow
water to maintain
natural flow path.

3 Ditches

Road surfaces

Rolling grade
Open-top surface drains
Outslope, inslope and crowned
Roadside berms

Rolling grades

3 Road surfaces

Rolling grade


3 Road surfaces

Deflectors and open-top surface drains

3 Road surfaces

Outsloped, insloped and crowned surfaces

Shape of a road can promote positive
water flow off the road.
Goal is to prevent water from
accumulating, weakening or eroding a

3 Road surfaces

Roadside berms
Can purposefully contain
water to protect a
Berm eventually breached
away from fish-stream

Grader berms can pond water,

weaken subgrade and should
be avoided.
3 Road surfaces

Cutslopes and fillslopes

Contain and direct water:
by use of a slope drain,
downdrain, or open-top
Terracing and increased
roughness will promote

Establish a cover:
by seeding, mulching, use of
fibrous mats, or
3 Cutslopes and fillslopes

Some maintenance may be required


Alternatives to aggregate armouring
Ditch considerations at stream crossings
Vertical alignment of road
Dewatering (during construction)
Stockpile management (during construction)
Protection against beaver damming

Aggregate is typically the
preferred material.
Can be used along the
fillslope and the immediate
stream bank

3 Culverts

Alternatives to aggregate armouring

Before and after photos

showing use of fibrous matting.
Numerous reinforcement mats
Wire-mesh gabions filled with
smaller, rounded river-rock.
3 Culverts

Ditch considerations at stream crossings

Fibrous matting used to
armour against erosion.
Silt fences used to promote
deposition of fines.

Ditch should not deliver water

directly to a stream
Direct delivery of ditch water
also delivers sediment.
3 Culverts

Vertical alignment of road

Promote road
surface flow away
from stream.
Low area allows
for overtopping
during sever
Armour the low
area as well if
stream has
potential to
overtop the road
3 Culverts


Can use a pump-&-hose system or a

gravity system.
Gravity flow can be through an open
trench or a contained bypass.
Dewatering during culvert installation
doubles as a BMP for achieving
desired compaction levels.
3 Culverts

Stockpile management
Common to have a
stockpile during
culvert installations.
Need to consider
how to:
1. prevent erosion
of the stockpile
(think cover)
2.contain sediment
(think deposition).

3 Culverts

Bridge deck
Abutments and wing walls
Vertical alignment of bridge deck with the

Bridge decks

Consider the amount of

sediment delivered to bridge

3 Bridges

Retrofitted guard rails

prevent direct delivery of
sediment into a water

Abutment and wing walls

Abutments should be planned
and placed where they are not
affected by high flow events.
Armour below abutment to
prevent undermining.

Wing walls vary by material

composition and orientation.
They contain road fill and
prevent ravel, but movement
may occur where wall ends
3 Bridges

Vertical alignment of bridge deck and approaches

Have the lowest area of the approach
away from the bridge deck to force flows
away from the stream.

Bridge decks
positioned at low
areas of the road will
require water

3 Bridges

Subsurface water management

Slumping due to subsurface
saturation can cause erosion;
especially noticeable along roads.

Common methods to
address subsurface
water is to build and
utilize French drains or
stand pipes.

Thank you
Ditch erosion
604 228 1555

Thank you & wooden box culvert replacement
604 228 1555