"Please accept the following complaint against BGD, Camden Lake.
This complaint, registered by John L. Wathen, Hurricane Creekkeeper, is based on an inspection performed by Michael William Mullen, CPESC (#2129)
On 02/21/10 I visited the site at Camden Lake with Michael Mullen, CPESC. He documented many flaws in the overall condition of the development as a whole and many problems associated with the homebuilders.
The following six slides are digital aerial photographs taken
by John Wathen on February 20, 2010.
These images by themselves show ample evidence that large
areas of Camden Lake have never been and are not now
stabilized with vegetation as required for sites where
vegetation has been removed and construction is not going to
take place for 6 months or more.
Note that much if not most of the brown in the images is bare
soil not dormant vegetation. This will be confirmed later in
the ground level images.
Numerous slides (2,3,4,6,9,10,15,17,18,19,20,21,22) show
excessive bare soil and demonstrate the failure to fully
implement or fully maintain Best Management Practices to the
maximum extent practicable.
Numerous slides also show conveyances for concentrated flow
that are not stabilized including slides 3,4,6,9,10,12,13,18,19
also demonstrating failure to fully implement or fully maintain
Best Management Practices to the maximum extent practicable.
Slides 3 and 4 show a rather recently cut drainage conveyance
that has no stabilization.
Slides 7 and 8 show poorly installed erosion control blankets
(ECBs) which should be in contact with the ground. Slide 11
shows (hard to see) silt fences that have failed because they
were improperly erected in concentrated flow areas.
Slide 5 shows an incompletely stabilized soil pile with a
drainage ditch placed immediately adjacent to it. Neither of
these constitute Best Management Practices and are indicative
of an overall failure to implement and maintain Best
Management Practices to the maximum extent practicable.
Additionally, slide 12 shows failure to achieve flow control by
failing to prevent concentrated flow or to put concentrated
flows into stabilized conveyances. This represents a major
failure to employ Best Management Practices to the maximum
Finally, slides 14 and 23 illustrate that sediment is being
delivered and moved down slope throughout this part of the site
and that treatment of pollutants is not achieved to the maximum
extent practicable by Best Management Practices.
Michael William Mullen, CPESC #2129
The images in the slides in part III of the report show many more
areas with eroding slopes and excessive bare soil areas both of
which show the failure to implement cover (either temporary
cover such as mulch for newly re-graded home sites or permanent
vegetation on sites that have been idle for more than 6 months).
Even worse, sites with large areas of bare soil are found next to
drop inlet structures where the is no current inlet protection BMP
as shown in slides (19, 21, 22, 30, 32-36). Metal posts were
stacked on 3 of the inlets indicating that inlet protection was
probably there earlier. Inlet protection is supposed to be
maintained until vegetative stabilization is achieved. The site
operator failed to implement and maintain Best Management
Practices to the maximum extent practicable by failing to
establish permanent vegetation on areas inactive for more than 6
months and failing to maintain inlet protection Best Management
Numerous slides show little or no effort to control movement of
sediment onto streets via tracking. The gravel used is too small
and does not meet Handbook specifications resulting pollutants
on the road. There were instances where cement-laden water was
drained onto the roadway and there was poor housekeeping
around dumpsters (not visible in picture) with broken glass and
drink containers present. Finally, slides 36-41 and 43 show
problems with slope protection.
Overall, my observations and my professional experience
indicate to me that the Camden Lake subdivision has not
implemented Best Management Practices for erosion and
sediment control to the maximum extent practicable, nor has it
maintained those practices which were implement in a manner
that would be considered anywhere close to achieving best
practicable implementation and maintenance.
Although it was not raining during my inspection the amount of
exposed unstabilized soil, the deposition of sediment in
temporary storage areas in channels and the appearance of the
stream at the site boundary indicates to me that pollutants in
excess of those that would be transported offsite with full and
correct implementation of both erosion and sediment control Best
Management Practices and regular and proper inspection and
maintenance of those measures has and continues to occur upon
significant rain events.
The Camden Lake subdivision in my professional opinion has not
implemented or maintained Best Management Practices for
erosion and sediment control to the maximum extent practicable.
Michael William Mullen, CPESC (#2129)
207 Gail Street
Troy, Alabama 36079
Mr. Mullen’s report indicates some serious issues with the overall condition of the development. While there seems to be limited construction at the site the BMP violations are consistently seen at every home site. The overall condition of the acreage contained in the development is seriously deficient and continuously depositing silt and turbid water to enter waters of the United States.
EPA and ADEM both have spoken with and even tried to “help” the developer overcome these conditions to no avail. Penalties and orders are woefully devoid of any visible deterrent behavior or compliance. It is time for EPA to step in and close this permit completely until all deficiencies have been abated. Meaningful penalties of at least the minimum $100,00 per day, per violation should be imposed at once.
QCP reports on total compliance are greatly exaggerated and not completed by a QCP. In most cases the signer is Mr. Tracy Chris. Mr. Chris is not a QCP. The consent order issued by ADEM clearly states that inspections must be performed by a QCP and reports must be completed also by a QCP. It is my opinion that Mr. Chris has badly misrepresented the conditions at Camden Lake.
"John L. Wathen
Friends of Hurricane Creek
Who has the authority to say someone else
is not being a good steward of the environment?
Anyone who notices.