In situ wave overtopping tests were performed on typical dike structures along the Schelde in Flanders (Belgium) with the Dutch Wave Overtopping Simulator. For a storm duration of 2 hours, wave overtopping characteristics were derived for significant wave heights ranging from 0,75 to 1 m and peak periods between 3 and 4 s. Prior to the in situ experiments, soil investigations were executed together with a detailed study of the quality of the grass cover. During the tests, video recordings were made and detailed pictures of the damage were taken. Water content and evolution of the grass cover were monitored. At one location, no failure was experienced up to 50 l/s per m, even after applying initial damage to the surface protection. Other locations failed after facing 30 l/s per m. Besides the cumulative overload method, available failure models are derived for steady overtopping conditions. Assuming erosion equivalence with unsteady overtopping conditions, different erosion resistance as well as (superficial) slip models are applied. Outcomes of the models are compared to the results of the in situ wave overtopping tests in Flanders (Belgium). Different approaches for describing the load term are discussed. Whether for unsteady overtopping conditions, erosion is predominant determined by the front velocity or an approximation of the average velocity of consecutive waves still needs further investigation. However, this discussion is maybe rather philosophical, because one’s choice has a direct influence on the threshold values under which waves are not accounted for. For all methods, the determination of threshold values given different qualities of covering is at-the-time still questionable.