How To Spot Erosion Problems

To some people, erosion is a process that happens naturally over time on shorelines and inland. The truth is that erosion can cause a lot damage to properties, land, and infrastructure and potentially endanger human lives.

For those reasons, it makes sense to know the signs of erosion and tackle those problems before they become catastrophic. The trouble is, how do you know what the signs of erosion are?

The following talks about why erosion is a problem, how to spot the signs of erosion, and the potential solutions to remedy those problems:

Why Erosion Is Bad News

Erosion is typically a slow process, although, in extreme weather conditions, this process can become rapidly accelerated. Irrespective of the speed that it happens, erosion is terrible news for several reasons.

First, the problems of erosion go beyond the loss of shorelines or fertile land. Erosion can increase pollution and sedimentation in rivers, streams, and other waterways. In turn, that can also cause declines in fish and other species.

Secondly, erosion can cause problems for agriculture, such as higher runoff rates, subsoil exposure, and the loss of crops. Thirdly, erosion can damage infrastructures like roads and railway tracks, airport runways, and urban developments.

Lastly, the damage to infrastructure can pose a significant threat to human life. For example, roads affected by erosion due to adverse weather conditions can cripple supplies to affected locations.

What Causes Erosion?

When it comes to shoreline erosion or other forms of erosion, there are typically two leading causes: water and wind. The causes might be due to progressive natural events, or they could be down to sudden ones like storms and hurricanes.

Erosion can affect any shoreline or inland area, regardless of its geographical location. Even places that most would consider to have “calm waters” or little irregular weather patterns can become eroded.


As you might expect, water erosion is a common problem for shoreline areas. Coasts and beaches are what many people would typically associate with erosion. But, it also occurs in inland areas like creeks, ponds, wastewater treatment plants, and more.

Water erosion can occur from the act of waves crashing into the coastline, but also from adverse weather conditions like storms and unseasonable rain.


Wind is also another contributing factor to erosion. As you can imagine, wind naturally moves soil from one location to another. But, wind erosion can also affect shorelines as well, either naturally or in an accelerated way.

Telltale Signs Of Erosion

For the most part, erosion is a slow progressive action. That means you won't usually see much happening in a short timeframe. However, it can become noticeable if you take regular images or aerial photography and compare the photos.

One of the leading questions many people have is, how can you tell if erosion is happening? The following are examples of common telltale signs:

Dry Patches Of Land

Have you noticed in areas by shorelines or elsewhere that you have dry patches of land or "bald spots" in the ground? Perhaps you've never seen any grass, trees, or other vegetation growing in those areas?

If that's the case, the reason could likely be down to erosion. In some cases, you may even notice some soil under those areas that isn't sustaining any life.

Exposed Rocks

You'll often find all kinds of things under the ground if you dig to a certain depth. Sometimes, erosion can bring items like rocks to the surface, which are clearly visible. If you've noticed an abundance of rocks showing along shorelines or elsewhere inland, you've likely come across another telltale sign of erosion.

Exposed Tree Roots

As erosion progresses, another telltale sign of it happening is when you see exposed tree roots along shorelines. It's evident if you notice trees that are right against shorelines, perhaps some distance away from normal water levels.When you see tree roots exposed, it means you must act fast as the soil in the area has eroded quickly.

Stream-Like Indentations

One final sign of erosion is when you notice stream-like indentations that have "carved" areas out of the ground. It happens both on shorelines and coastlines, and elsewhere like at lakes and other bodies of water.

Erosion Control Options

Now that you're aware of how serious the issue is of shoreline erosion and erosion elsewhere, you'll need to act upon any telltale signs spotted on your land or around your properties.

The trouble is, what steps can you take to remedy the situation and ensure that erosion isn't something that can continue? Take a look at the following examples for some ideas:

Ground Leveling

One idea is to look into ground leveling. If you have land or shorelines with steep, long slopes, water erosion can become accelerated. If possible, it makes sense to level out the ground to prevent further damage from happening.

Note that you should take care not to damage any underground infrastructure like pipes or wiring when leveling out any ground.

Planting Vegetation

Another idea is to look at planting vegetation. Plant roots do a great job of allowing water to move into the soil instead of causing it to erode. Did you know that even planting grass is a good move for achieving that goal?

Flexamat Erosion Control Solutions

Lastly, Flexamat erosion control solutions are an excellent way to stop shoreline and soil erosion permanently. Flexamat concrete block mats can get utilized for stabilizing shorelines, slopes, channels, and more.

One of the many advantages of using Flexamat is that it allows for optional vegetation growth.


Erosion is undeniably a big problem on shorelines and elsewhere. It has the potential to wreak havoc, yet many people are unaware of the telltale signs that it's happening.The above information will help you spot the signs of erosion and deal with it before it causes lasting damage to your land, properties, or infrastructure.