Banner - Homes are Collapsing Into the Ocean

Homes are Collapsing into the Ocean in Florida

Body - Homes are Collapsing Into the OceanNote: This article was originally posted on

By Rachel Ramirez, CNN
Fri November 11, 2022

(CNN) — Homes and buildings are collapsing into the ocean and authorities have issued warnings to evacuate some areas as Tropical Storm Nicole pushes a huge volume of ocean water onshore in southeast Florida. Video from Volusia County shows homes crumbling, reduced to wreckage, as Nicole’s waves erode the coastline. Separate video shows the county’s beach safety office collapsing into the rising water. “Right now, ground zero is here,” Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood told CNN affiliate WESH-TV on Wednesday as Nicole came ashore as a category 1 hurricane.

Three main factors are contributing to the dangerous situation on the coast. Nicole’s storm surge, which peaked at around 6 feet Thursday morning, is significant because of how massive the storm was as it approached Florida on Wednesday, with tropical storm-force winds stretching for more than 500 miles. That storm surge pushed ashore on top of exceptionally high tides associated with this week’s full moon. And behind it all, sea level in this part of Florida has risen more than a foot in the past 100 years, according to data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and most of that rise has occurred in the past three decades.

Scientists and researchers have long warned that sea level rise is leading to more erosion and high-tide flooding — particularly during extreme coastal storms. This is putting even more stress on sea walls, which are meant to protect coastal communities from high waves and water levels. “We do gradually put more stress on [sea walls] with sea level rise,” Brian McNoldy, a senior research associate at the University of Miami’s School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, told CNN. “More and more of them are gradually, completely submerged in saltwater, which concrete does not like.”

McNoldy also noted that these walls are aging, and the back-to-back nature of storms is making seawalls more vulnerable. It was only six weeks ago that Hurricane Ian’s storm surge eroded parts of Florida’s eastern coast. “It doesn’t really take a strong storm – you just need high tides or storm-agitated tides to wash away or put extra stress on the walls,” he said. “Having these two storms six weeks apart, if you don’t give places any time to repair or replenish, each storm definitely leaves its mark.”


Banner - Miles of Ageing Seawalls

Miles of Ageing Seawalls

Body - Miles of Ageing Seawalls“Often 20 feet tall or higher, these concrete behemoths are constructed to withstand the sustained assault of incoming waves and storm surges. Seawalls currently line 14 percent, or nearly 15,000 miles, of the United States coastline—a number that’s expected to grow in the coming decades as the sea level rises.”

There are thousands of miles of seawalls in use that were constructed in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. Over time, changes to these structures result in weakening structural integrity. Upon noticing any of the four critical warning signs of seawall failure, property owners must decide whether to enlist the assistance of a qualified seawall repair contractor or to delay action and risk failure and the high cost of replacement. Seawall Repair Network offers the most effective seawall stabilization and seawall preservation repair methods.

Seawall Repair Network® preferred marine contractors are carefully selected for their experience, integrity, reputation, and customer service record. Each contractor has been thoroughly trained in Seawall Repair Network® product and solution application methods. Seawall Repair Network® is the only national, all-inclusive seawall repair and preservation network.

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The Oldest Known Seawall

Body - The Oldest Known SeawallHumans have relied on waterfront protection barrier systems for a very long time. The oldest known seawall is at the edge of a 7,000-year-old village on the coast of Israel. This seawall was approximately 330 feet long and built in a dog-leg pattern with boulders transported from a nearby river. Although seawall engineering has advanced with time, protective waterfront structures have followed the same basic forms for centuries.

“During the time of occupation the area to the west of the seawall would have been a swash zone, a beach area that is alternately covered and exposed by up-rush and backwash of waves. This area is therefore exposed to spray and threatened by storm surge and wave run-up. Given its nature, location, and orientation, we propose that the boulder-built seawall was probably constructed to protect the Tel Hreiz settlement from swash-zone encroachment.” Read more here…
– PLOS ONE Journal

While that seawall has since deteriorated and only remnants remain, today’s seawall owners have access to the latest in seawall stabilization and preservation methods. Property owners should immediately take action upon noticing any of the four critical warning signs of seawall failure. These four warning signs are: soil depressions near the seawall, rust stains on the surface, movement or shifting of any part of the wall, and cracks in the concrete.

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The Importance of Shoreline Resilience

Body - Importance of Shoreline ResilienceOur international population is rapidly approaching 8 billion people. According to the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration, “almost 40 percent of the population lives in relatively high-population-density coastal areas, where sea level plays a role in flooding, shoreline erosion, and hazards from storms. Globally, eight of the world’s 10 largest cities are near a coast, according to the U.N. Atlas of the Oceans.” Read more here…

The international community must prepare and implement engineered design plans to contend with the severe forces of nature and ever-increasing water levels. Waterfront property and infrastructure must be resilient to the forces of mother nature.

New York City alone has a population of nearly 25 million citizens, in just roughly 300 square miles. This area is situated on one of the world’s largest natural harbors, with water covering 36.4% of its surface area. Providing resilient infrastructure to protect against rising water levels has become a priority for federal, city, county, and city planners over the last few years. (Pictured: Seawall Repair NetworkⓇ preferred marine contractors Mary Grubbs and Lou Marques of LJS Waterproofing and Northeast Seawall & Soil Stabilization.) Seawall Repair NetworkⓇ is committed to educating and working with all parties in meeting the difficult tasks associated with creating more resilient shoreline communities.

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Seawall Repair Network Attends Erosion Control Conference in Australia

Body - Erosion Control ConferenceRepresentatives from Bayset Specialist Trade Suppliers, Seawall Repair NetworkⓇ’s Master Distributor in Australia, recently attended the 2022 IECA Australasia Conference. The purpose of the conference is to create awareness of the worldwide issue of the loss of sediment and the effect it has on water quality and property. The conference is also a venue to promote new technologies that control the erosion of soil from behind seawalls, bulkheads, and leaking infrastructure. Seawall Repair NetworkⓇ National Program Manger Ken Braunlich (not pictured), Bayset National Business Development Manager Michael Ewart, and Bayset New South Wales Sales Manager Greg Smith were in attendance. The event was held in Coffs Harbour, New South Wales.

From the IECA Australasia Conference website:
“The 2022 IECA Australasia Conference was held at the Pacific Bay Resort Coffs Harbour, NSW from the 19th to the 21st of October, 2022. This Conference brought together scientists, engineers, professionals, practitioners, regulators, academics, and students in a common forum to engage, collaborate, discuss and dive headfirst into finding solutions to effectively stop the spread of sediment to protect our valuable soil and water resources.”

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Seawall Repair Products

Body - Seawall Repair ProductsIn most cases, seawall repair is NOT a DIY project. It’s important to find a qualified seawall repair specialist instead of a general contractor. In this article, we’ll explain the benefits of Seawall Repair Network® repair products when installed by our network of highly-trained preferred marine contractors.

SW-RP1: Seawall Repair Product for Sealing Leaks & Strengthening Soil

As mentioned in a previous blog post, What is SW-RP1? Why Do You Need It for Seawall & Bulkhead Repair? “The hallmark of Seawall Repair Network® is our proprietary SW-RP1 repair permeation solution. Simply put – it is the best product on the market for seawall soil stabilization. SW-RP1 is essential for sealing your seawall’s panel cracks, filling voids and defects behind your seawall, and perhaps most importantly, proving soil stabilization for your seawall. SW-RP1 transforms the surrounding soil of your seawall into a water-tight impermeable mass, which blocks the transference of energy and lateral stress caused by the typical build-up of hydrostatic pressure behind the seawall. SW-RP1 is environmentally safe and is certified to NSF (61-5) standards for contact with drinking water.

SW-RP6: Seawall Repair Product for Stabilizing Surrounding Soil

In the blog article SW-RP6: Soil Stabilization for Seawall Repair we explain that “SW-RP6 is ideal for stabilizing soil around ancillary structures during the seawall repair process. This comes into play with buildings, parking garages, roadways, and other infrastructure in close proximity to seawalls with soil loss and settlement. In cases like this, the Seawall Repair Network® contractor essentially creates chemical grout columns to provide stability. SW-RP6 is phthalate-free and NSF certified to NSF/ANSI/CAN 61 (approved for contact with drinking water).”

Seawall Repair Products for Concrete Preservation

From Seawall & Bulkhead Concrete Preservation: “Concrete is chemically formed through a process known as hydration/curing. Concrete deteriorates chemically under the influence of soil, water, and air-born contaminants, weathering action, and corrosion of the embedded steel reinforcement. Seawall Repair Network® offers a complete solution to prevent, restore, and protect steel-reinforced concrete by modifying its chemical and physical properties.” Click here for more information on  Seawall Preservation products.

Hire a Qualified Seawall Repair Contractor

As outlined in the blog post What to Look for in a Seawall or Bulkhead Repair Contractor, “Seawall Repair Network® is the only national, all-inclusive network of highly trained and qualified Preferred Marine Contractors. Preferred Marine Contractors are carefully selected for their:

  • Experience
  • Integrity
  • Reputation
  • Customer Service Record

Each contractor has been thoroughly trained in Seawall Repair Network® product and solution application methods.”

Banner - Four Critical Warning Signs of Seawall Failure

Four Critical Warning Signs of Seawall Failure

Body - Four Critical Warning Signs of Seawall FailureCorrosion, tides, boat wakes, tropical storms, and hurricanes can all contribute to seawall damage and, ultimately, failure. Additional causes undermine the structure on the landward side. Rainfall creates more hydrostatic pressure than rising and falling tides. Every time it rains or the irrigation system runs (and every time the tide goes out) all of the groundwater above the waterline needs a place to go. Massive pressure can build up if that water is trapped on the landward side, putting immense stress on the structure. (Read more in the article, How Soil Instability Causes Seawall Damage.) That is a recipe for seawall failure that can be avoided if you know the signs.

Soil Depressions Near the Seawall

Soil depressions appear due to the loss of soil near the structure. Water is seeping through or underneath the seawall, weakening the structure and contributing to soil erosion. Strong surrounding soil is critical to a healthy seawall.

Rust Stains on the Surface

Rust stains are a sign of corroded rebar inside the concrete. Corroded rebar expands, cracking and destabilizing the structure.

Movement or Shifting of the Seawall

Hydrostatic pressure and/or lack of supporting soil around the structure can cause sections of the wall to move or shift over time.

Cracks in the Concrete

Cracks in the concrete can be caused by spalling due to rebar corrosion, or movement due to hydrostatic pressure and unstable soil.

Additional Signs of Seawall Failure

  • Blocked or clogged weep holes (vents that are used for draining landward side water build-up to relieve hydrostatic pressure).
  • Sand or soil deposits at the bottom of the wall panel joints on the water side. This indicates sediment seeping through the joints from the landward side.
  • Damage to structures up to 100 feet away. Water infiltration on the landward side can expand a great distance when proper venting/drainage is not occurring.  Look for sinkholes, depressions, and/or sunken concrete in the general area surrounding the seawall.

Seawall Repair Network’s Proprietary Repair Process

Let’s review the proprietary repair process used by Seawall Repair Network’s preferred marine contractors. First, crews perform deep injections of SW-RP1 repair material directly behind each panel joint in the seawall. This process fills all the voids while permeating and strengthening the soil. The permeated soil becomes as hard as crystalline bedrock. Next, a new pressure relief system is created by coring through weep hole channels and the layer of resin that has been installed behind them. These new channels extend through the permeated soil and into the soil on the landward side. Proprietary pressure release technology is then installed to regulate the release of hydrostatic pressure from any new water that may form behind the wall in the future. Because pressure release technology also stops landward-side soil from passing through the dewatering channels, it prevents new erosion and void formations. If needed, seawall preservation treatments can also be applied to the concrete. The support of high-strength SW-RP1 repair material, combined with the regulation of hydrostatic pressure and concrete preservation treatment protects the seawall from subsequent movement, damage, or failure.

Banner - Seawall Repair Case Studies

Seawall Repair Case Studies

Body - Seawall Repair Case StudiesMother nature’s oceans, lakes, and rivers can be so beautiful and calm but over time her natural forces will cause damage and eventual failure to seawalls and bulkheads. These complicated structures are made up of a variety of essential components. If one component fails, the entire structure is at risk. In traditionally constructed seawalls, weep holes with a geotextile fabric filter allow water to flow from the landward side back into the ocean to prevent pressure buildup.

So what causes a seawall to fail? Over time, as the filter fabric fails, soil migration creates voids behind the wall, which causes structural instability. As the voids behind the wall fill up with water, hydrostatic pressure behind the seawall causes the wall panels to shift over time. The shifting panels damage the seawall cap, which holds the entire structure together. When this happens, failure of the seawall is imminent. If ignored, these problems only get worse. Water is relentless but we can be too.

Professionally trained contractors armed with Seawall Repair Network’s proprietary repair process have repaired all kinds of seawalls in a wide variety of locations. Here are a few case studies…

Banner - Repairing Storm Damaged Seawalls

Repairing Storm Damaged Seawalls, Bulkheads, and Revetments

Body - Repairing Storm Damaged SeawallsEvery year, storms cause damage to countless waterfront barriers. When properly maintained, seawalls, bulkheads, and revetments provide critical protection to valuable lakeside and oceanfront property. There are many types of storms that can damage waterfront barriers.

Seawalls, bulkheads, and revetments can be damaged by:

  • Tropical Depressions
  • Tropical Storms
  • Hurricanes
  • Severe Thunderstorms
  • Tornadoes

Many storm-damaged waterfront barriers can be repaired with Seawall Repair Network’s proprietary repair process featuring a combination of seawall stabilization and seawall preservation.

Seawall Stabilization:

  • SW-RP1 Stabilization & Leak Repair Material
  • Pressure Release Technology
  • Structural Repair for Seawall Caps and Panels
  • Advanced Permanent Anchoring System

Seawall Preservation:

  • SW-Prevent: Corrosion Inhibitor
  • SW-Power: Strength Builder
  • SW-Protect: Surface Protector
Banner - Join Us in Supporting Hurricane Ian Relief Efforts

Join Us in Supporting Hurricane Ian Relief Efforts

Body - Join Us in Supporting Hurricane Ian Relief EffortsSeawall Repair Network is proud to donate a portion of all proceeds to the Volunteer Florida Foundation’s Hurricane Ian relief efforts through the end of 2023. Join us in supporting our neighbors in Florida, who were affected by Hurricane Ian.

From the Volunteer Florida website:

The Florida Disaster Fund is the State of Florida’s official private fund established to assist Florida’s communities as they respond to and recover during times of emergency or disaster. In partnership with the public sector, private sector, and other non-governmental organizations, the Florida Disaster Fund supports response and recovery activities.

Donations to the Florida Disaster Fund are made to the Volunteer Florida Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization (EIN# 01-0973168), and are tax-deductible. Up to 3%, however, no more than $30,000 is typically taken from each donation to cover administrative costs, including but not limited to staff salary, indirect costs, and credit card and bank transaction fees. However, for Hurricane Ian, all administrative and credit card fees have been waived so that 100% of every donation can be used to help Floridians recover.


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