A strong bulkhead can make or break any waterfront home on Long Island.

Assessing the condition of bulkheads on a regular basis can extend the service life of a structure. Performing preventative maintenance or minor repairs as a result of a bulkhead condition study can be completed before they become major concerns.

Often times, bulkhead problems do not “surface” until it is too late. Sinkholes or bulkhead failure can have a substantial economic impact on marina operations. Underwater bulkhead deterioration or other problems such as undermining due to propeller scour are not visible above the water and cannot be monitored on a regular basis.

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Bulkhead Facts

1. Bulkhead designs are site-specific and the design elements of a particular structure should be understood prior to evaluation.

2. Bulkhead materials of construction exhibit various forms of deterioration in the marine environment. Proper material identification is essential to assess structural performance.

3. ASCE recently released a standard practice manual to provide guidance for the above/below water assessment of marine structures.

4. Bulkhead evaluations should be conducted by qualified personnel under the supervision of a licensed professional engineer.