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DDES inspectors taking proactive steps to protect local waterways


Rainy season brings new responsibilities for construction projects


DDES inspectors taking proactive steps to protect local waterways

Monitoring erosion and sediment control measures, or preventing muddy, silty runoff from leaving construction sites and leaching into streams and other waterways, is a major responsibility for DDES building and land use inspectors, especially during the rainy months in unincorporated King County.

Each fall, DDES publishes information on erosion and sediment control requirements for wet season construction sites via the DDES Web site at and enforces these more stringent requirements during building, land use and grading inspections. Erosion and sediment control enforcement is a major element of the environmental responsibilities fulfilled by DDES in the context of the permitting process.

The erosion and sediment control requirements published on the DDES Web site has been compiled to inform the building industry of current regulations, practices and restrictions during the wet season, which runs between October 1 and April 30 each year in unincorporated King County.

DDES Director Stephanie Warden commented, "It is important for the public to be aware that DDES provides this valuable service during the building and land use inspection processes. Not only does DDES inspect new construction for physical integrity. We are also inspecting to ensure that negative downstream consequences from new construction do not occur. All of this work is done within the context of existing building and land use codes."

Stephanie Warden commented further, "While DDES is a regulatory agency with specific responsibilities to enforce erosion and sediment control measures on construction sites, we make every effort to partner with the building community to achieve compliance. DDES provides a great deal of educational literature to builders and developers each fall, and there is always a conference on site between the inspector and the builder before construction begins. These measures ensure good communication and effective partnership between local government and builders and developers."

DDES is committed to an effective erosion and sediment control program to protect our streams, lakes, wetlands and the aquatic species that inhabit them. Additional technical assistance for erosion control on project sites is available. DDES inspection staff are also available to offer suggestions to help builders and developers stay in compliance with county code and permit conditions.

For additional details, or to tour a construction site with Erosion and Sediment Control measures in place, please contact Bernard Moore, DDES Building Inspections Supervisor, at 206 296-6762 or e-mail, or Paula Adams, Public Information and Records Officer, at 206-296-6682 or e-mail

See also

Erosion and sediment control for construction sites