Articles about all aspects of CDM 15 regulations.

Protecting the public under CDM15 regulations

Protecting the Public under CDM 2015

The Construction (Design & Management) Regulations (CDM 2015) are the primary set of rules governing construction projects. It applies to all construction and building work and includes every type of project from new build and conversions to refurbishment and demolition.

Part of the law requires those in charge of construction projects to carry out operations without posing a danger to the public. This includes other workers who can potentially be affected by the construction work.

According to HSE inspector David Kirkpatrick, construction companies must make it a priority to secure their construction sites to prevent access by unauthorised parties. These sites can be full of hazards that vulnerable people such as children may not be able to fully understand.

Under CDM 2015, the project client should provide all necessary information about the following particulars:

  • Site boundaries
  • Usage of land bordering the construction site
  • Site access
  • Steps to prevent unauthorised parties from accessing the site

This information will guide the measures taken by contractors. Key issues that need to be addressed are:

  • Managing access to the site
  • Any hazards that could present a danger to the public
  • Vulnerable groups that may be affected

All construction sites must have:

  • Defined measures to manage access across designated boundaries and,
  • Steps to prevent unauthorised people from gaining access to the work site

While there has been a decline in the numbers of children being injured or killed on construction sites, complacency must be avoided. Two or three children die every year after accessing building sites, and many more are seriously injured.

It’s not just children who are at risk but also other members of the public, such as passers-by, can be injured by:

  • Tools or materials that fall outside the boundaries of the job site
  • Tripping and falling into trenches
  • Being hit by moving construction vehicles

For maximum efficacy, the pre-construction information from the client should include:

  • All project boundaries
  • Information about adjacent land use
  • Access information
  • Measures to keep unauthorised people out

To manage site access, the following are required.

Site Boundaries

To manage public risk, boundaries must be defined by suitable fencing. The fence type should be consistent with the type of site and the surroundings. Contractors need to determine what the perimetre will consist of, supply the fencing, and maintain it once erected.

Questions that contractors must ask themselves include:

  • What is the type and nature of the construction work being performed
  • How heavily populated is the area?
  • Who will need to visit the site while work is being carried out?
  • Will children be attracted to the site?
  • What are the characteristics of the site? For example, location, proximity to other buildings, current site boundaries.

In populated areas, this will typically mean a mesh fence around two metres high or hoarding around the construction site.

Authorisation

The primary contractor must take adequate measures to prevent unauthorised parties from accessing the site.

  • People may be restricted to certain areas or authorised to access the entire site.
  • The contractor must explain applicable site rules to authorised parties and perform any required induction.
  • They may have to accompany or supervise some authorised parties while on site or accessing certain areas.

Hazards that Present a Risk to the Public

Many construction site hazards present a risk to visitors and the general public. Contractors must consider if they exist on a certain project and, if so, how they will manage them.

  • Falling objects: Objects must not be able to fall outside the site boundaries. Contractors may have to use brick guards, netting, toe-boards, fans, and covered walkways.
  • Site vehicles. Contractors must ensure that pedestrians cannot be hit by vehicles entering or leaving the site.
  • Access equipment. Measures must be taken to prevent people outside the site boundary from being hit while scaffolding and other access equipment is being erected, used, and dismantled.
  • Stacking and storing materials. Reduce the risks associated with storing materials by storing them within the perimetre of the site, ideally in a secure location or away from the fencing.
  • Excavations and openings. People can be hurt if they fall into excavati9ns, stairwells, and other open areas.
  • Other hazards include road works, slips, trips, and falls in pedestrian areas, hazardous substances, plant equipment and machinery, dust, noise, and vibration, and energy sources such as electricity.

Vulnerable Groups

Children, the elderly, and people with certain disabilities may need special consideration, especially if work is being done in locations like hospitals and schools.

Children can be attracted to construction sites as potential play areas. Constractors must take all reasonable steps to keep them from accessing the site and endangering themselves.

The steps below are especially important for child safety:

  • When work is finished for the day, secure the site thoroughly
  • Cover or erect barriers around pits and excavations
  • Immobilise vehicles and lock them away if possible
  • Store building materials such as cement bags, manhole rings, and pipes so that they cannot tip or roll over
  • Remove access ladders from scaffolds and excavations
  • Make sure that all hazardous substances are locked away

Safer Sphere are able to advise on any aspect of CDM 2015.

Have a question?

If you would like to speak to us about any of our CDM services, then our team would be happy to help.

How to pass a Health And Safety Inspection

How to pass a construction site H&S audit

The health and safety needs of a construction site can change from one year to the next, which is why audits need to be carried out on a regular basis.

This routine diligence helps to ensure the health, safety, and welfare of employees within an organisation by detecting areas where improvement is needed. It also ensures that construction companies remain compliant with their legal duties and responsibilities.

What is a health and safety audit?

A health and safety audit is an independent and methodical assessment of a construction site’s processes. The documented results are measured against mandated criteria to confirm that the site managers are upholding health and safety standards.

In general, a construction site audit will review factors like the following to ensure a safe environment for workers:

  • Procedures involving hazardous materials
  • Safe and proper use of equipment
  • Presence of hazards such as exposed live wires, holes that have not been barricaded off, and debris in the work area

When you’ve been informed that your construction site is scheduled for an audit, here are some steps you can take to make it as conscientious and safe as possible. Although these processes should be in place and remain in place throughout the construction.

Post safety notices

Posting safety notices is required on all construction sites. This includes clearly identifying and marking all dangerous materials and hazards, from toxic chemicals to wet paint, so that there can be no mistake as to what they are. The single most common cause of accidents on construction sites is a failure to communicate.

Create walkways

Create clearly marked walkways that help site visitors and inspectors avoid hazardous work areas, such as places where falling debris might be a risk. By the same token, protect workers from accidentally interfering with and injuring each other by isolating all work areas that could overlap. You can do this by posting temporary barriers and caution tape where appropriate.

Have management tour the site

Arrange for company managers to carry informal safety inspections at a construction site to identify any areas that may need attention. This internal auditing team could include your company’s managing director and a senior level manager from your client’s firm.

New sets of eyes can spot problems that people who work on the site every day may miss. Any potential safety issues that come to light during these inspections must be acted on immediately.

Run PPE checks

All personnel on a construction site should be wearing the correct Personal Protective Equipment or PPE, and know where it is stored.

This equipment, which may include safety hats, protective glasses, steel-toed shoes or boots, and protective gloves, must be kept in a clean and dry place that is also easy to access.

Designated employees should inspect all PPE every week to confirm that it is being properly cleaned and maintained and that there are sufficient quantities of replacement items for any equipment that breaks. Record each check to create an inspection record.

Prepare site checklists

All construction vehicles on a job site should be checked on a regular basis by competent and qualified personnel. Engage a mechanic to carry out a planned maintenance programme that involves a thorough check of each vehicle and essential components like steering and braking systems. Certain equipment falls under LOLER (lifting equipment regulations) so is subject to specific testing at predefined intervals.

Complement this type of professional inspection by requiring each worker to inspect a vehicle before they climb into the driver’s seat or take up the wheel. This combination of professional and in-house inspections can turn up issues before they become major problems and reach the attention of H&S auditors.

Inspect equipment regularly

Plant facilities aren’t the only areas that need inspecting. On a construction site, have each worker check things like electrical equipment, lifting straps, and hand tools for defects or excessive signs of wear before use. For example, if a safety hat is cracked or the handle on a hammer is loose, someone could easily be hurt.

Carry out safety inspections

Arrange for the construction site project and/or safety inspector to carry out a more formal safety audit, accompanied by site workers if possible. These types of inspections could include steps such as safety spot checks, where inspecting one aspect of on-site safety can provide an idea of site-wide safety conditions.

These inspections accomplish a dual purpose: to identify areas of concern and demonstrate the commitment of senior management to the safety of all workers on the construction site. When properly conducted, they can enhance trust between workers and management.

For maximum efficiency, schedule these higher-profile inspections to support the informal management tours and to prepare in advance for independent safety audits.

Follow up in scheduled intervals

When these actions are collected into a workplace system, it ensures the safety and well-being of everyone working on a construction site. Your system should consider the following factors:

  • How often an inspection should take place
  • Who is responsible for scheduling them
  • Who is responsible for carrying them out
  • The abilities and qualifications of those carrying out the inspections
  • What information is included on the checklists
  • Any actions that will arise from these inspections
  • Who is responsible for correcting any issues uncovered during the inspection
  • The time frame for carrying out inspections

Each time a construction project begins, it’s worth compiling an audit schedule to ensure that all aspects of the work are being reviewed for safety and quality throughout the project duration as opposed to the same few areas that are traditionally targeted.

When you create your own system for a construction site health & safety audit, it ensures that any issues that develop on a job site never evolve into problems with catastrophic consequences. Construction contractors who don’t properly fulfill their obligations for on-site safety may risk significant penalties or loss of contracts. It also stands to reason that sites with poor safety conditions are dangerous to workers by causing them to risk injury or worse.

Safer Sphere are able to advise on any aspect of CDM 2015.

Have a question?

If you would like to speak to us about any of our CDM services, then our team would be happy to help.

Architect responsibilities CDM15

Architects And Your Obligations Under CDM15 Regulations

The CDM 2015 regulations provide guidance for architects and others involved in the design role of buildings.

In addition to those who directly prepare and modify construction project designs such as architects, other professionals affected by CDM 2015 laws may also arrange for or instruct others in how to do so. These could include:

  • Architects
  • Consulting engineers
  • Quantity surveyors
  • Any professional who carries out design work, such as contractors and tradespeople (e.g., an electrician who designs the specification and layout of an electrical installation)
  • Commercial clients who actively participate in the design of their project

UK architects who are reviewing the Construction Design and Management (CDM) 2015 regulations will notice the ‘reasonable practicability’ theme underlying them, which have been designed to try and make the laws practical to work with.

This approach can make it easy to forget that these duties are also subject to criminal law. It is therefore important for architects and others offering building design advice to be fully aware of their obligations under CDM 2015.

Duty to Avoid Harm

Designers such as architects play an important role in helping to ensure that the construction process avoids harm. This is because their influence begins during the early planning and design stages of a new construction project. Their decisions can affect the welfare of the following:

  • Workers and contractors who perform the construction work
  • Those who use, repair, clean, refurbish, and demolish a work site or building

Design decisions such as selecting building components or materials can control, reduce, and even avoid the risks inherent in building a structure and both using and maintaining it after it is built. These designer duties apply on all projects, including (but not limited to):

  • Large construction projects
  • Minor building workers
  • Domestic projects
  • Smaller projects involving repairs and refurbishment

Designer duties come into effect as soon as the design professional is appointed and designs intended for construction work begin. While the greater percentage of design work takes place during a project’s pre-construction phase, it sometimes extends into the actual construction process.

Knowledge, Skills, and Experience Needed by Designers

To ensure safety during a project, a designer must be able to demonstrate that they possess the following:

  • Skills, knowledge, and experience (SKE) in the area of health and safety
  • The organisational ability to do the work they have been appointed to do (if the designer is part of an organisation)

The degree of SKE required should be in proportion to the project complexity and the nature and range of potential risks.

Examples of SKE demonstration may include:

  • Membership in professional bodies or institutions
  • Records of adherence to continued professional development

Examples of organisational capability could include:

  • Prequalification assessment by independent assessors who are members of recognised organisations such as Safety Schemes in Procurement Forum
  • Self-assessment using the Publicly Available Specification PAS 91 health and safety pre-qualification questions

Official Guidelines

The Health and Safety Executive is in favour of a lower-key approach for smaller projects that involve less risk and a more detailed approach for complex projects. It also advocates that actions remain in proportion to potential risks.

This flexible approach to CDM legislation is intended to make it user-friendly, but from a legal perspective, this can subject everything to interpretation, especially since the 2015 regulations have not really been tested by case law.

A legal practicalities course called RIBA CDM 2015 uses the regulations (as opposed to third-party guidance notes) to explain the duties and responsibilities of those involved in the CDM process, including the key role of the Principal Designer.

The course developers believed that unofficial guidance was so prevalent that architects will find it beneficial to return to the source material, where it will be made obvious that the CDM regulations were structured to be practical instead of difficult to navigate.

They accepted that the absence of any flurry of legal action over CDM duty failures since the new regulations were introduced indicates that the Health and Safety Executive has struck the correct balance between practicality and prescription.

The central role of the Principal Designer is a central part of CDM 2015. They must be appointed on any project that has multiple contractors. The Principal Designer does not have to be appointed on projects for domestic clients, but their duties must still be carried out by the lead designer. The RIBA recommendation is that members discuss these duties with clients as a mandatory part of their architectural services and satisfy themselves that the client understands what they are doing.

One of the primary motivators behind the CDM changes was the desire of the Health and Safety Executive to see the Principal Designer selected from the design team. This approach replaces the former CDM Coordinator role, which often belonged to a third-party consultant who did not influence design decisions and their ramifications for health and safety.

Duties of the Principal Designer

The Principal Designer duties include:

  • Planning, managing, and overseeing the preconstruction phase of a project. The client must provide Preconstruction Information and the Principal Designer is obligated to help the client provide it as well as evaluate its adequacy. They must also share Preconstruction Information with all contractors and other designers that have been appointed or are under consideration.
  • The management and coordination of health and safety concerns and the sharing of such details wherever design work is being done. From this perspective, the Principal Designer is a supervisory role that ensures cooperation.

For the duration of their appointment, the principal designer is required by duty to work with the Principal Contractor and share key information regarding planning, management, and monitoring.

The Principal Designer must work within what is known as the ‘general principles of prevention’, but in proportion to the project scope. In others words, to an extent that is both reasonable and practicable.

If legal action arises from the project, documentation is essential. The Principal Designer must be in a position afterwards to prove why certain decisions were made and why they were the reasonable thing to do at the time.

Safer Sphere are able to advise on any aspect of CDM 2015.

Have a question?

If you would like to speak to us about any of our CDM services, then our team would be happy to help.

CDM Contractor Duties Advice

Further Duties For The Contractor To Comply With CDM15 Regulations

In previous articles we have considered the duty of the Contractor under CDM15 and the role of the Contractor; the duty to manage the work safely, how a Contractor may check the competency of workers on the project team, safety with tools, equipment and materials and any information and instruction that is passed to the contractor from the Pre-Construction Phase or during the Construction Phase of the project.

It must be remembered that the flow of information will be two way and the Contractor must keep the Construction Phase Plan up to date and expect that the Principal Contractor manage the Plan similarly.

Here we are going to delve deeper into the requirements for consultation and co-operation with other duty holders.

How Contractors can consult with Employees

There must be collaboration between Contractors as employer and the workers that are on task to get individuals to work safely. Involving workers in the decision making process with regards health and safety tends to lead to practical solutions, practical solutions that increase the potential commitment and buy in from workers to any Health and Safety topics.

Practical solutions are more easily fostered by the workforce, practical solutions generally come from speaking to workers about their experience and knowledge about a task or job. When experienced workers are consulted on matters of health and safety, it will be easier to spot workplace hazards and to implement realistic controls that will not be seen as a burden or barrier to completing a task to programme.

Consultation is a proven means of managing Health and Safety on construction projects. Consultation is not only about employers giving information to workers that is part of the Construction Phase Plan, but also requires the Contractor as an employer to listen to workers and consider their experience in the field and previous issues that they have come up against in similar situations.

Consultation with the work force should cover the hazards associated from their own work and the work of others working on the project as well as those environmental risks that modern construction techniques may harbour, the way these risks are managed and how information and training to protect workers from relevant risks should be discussed at length.

Preparing the Construction Phase Plan

Preparing the Construction Phase Plan is the responsibility of the Principal Contractor where more than one Contractor is present on site. In situations where there is only one Contractor, the Construction Phase Plan cannot be left up to another contractor as there is essentially no one to pass this duty to.

A Construction Phase Plan describes how health and safety will be managed during construction and will contain information that is relevant to all Contractors working on the project. The Construction Phase Plan should be available to anyone who wants to see it and therefore the information contained in it should be clear and easily understood with all superfluous information removed. Issues such as logistics, working at height, hazardous substances, demolition and groundworks should all be considered and included in the Construction Phase Plan if the works include it.

Before any site is set up or work begins in the Construction Phase, the Plan should be developed. While it is the duty of the [Principal] Contractor to develop the Construction Phase Plan, it is the responsibility of the Client to ensure that the Construction Phase Plan is in place before the work begins.

 

Providing Welfare Facilities

Welfare includes the provision of toilets, both lit and ventilated and suitable for both sexes. With more and more female staff working on Construction sites, male and female toilets are thankfully becoming more common, but are open to abuse if not managed correctly. Washing facilities with hot and cold water, soap or skin detergent with a means of drying hands should be close to the toilet facility. Separately, but just as important are rest facilities, a room with tables and chairs with drinking water and cups is a bare minimum.

Where workers will need to change clothes or dry their workwear, a separate changing/drying room with lockers should be provided. It should be noted that while the lockers should be provided by the [Principal] Contractor, it is commonly the responsibility of the Contractor to supply their own key and lock.

The supply of Welfare Facilities is part of CDM15. Where one Contractor is charged with a Construction Project, the Welfare Facilities should be suitable and sufficient for the size of the project and should be available from when construction starts until the end of the project. Were more than one contractor is working on a project, it is the Principal Contractor who is ultimately responsible for ensuring that welfare facilities are provided.

It is the Clients responsibility to ensure that suitable arrangements are provided for workers welfare by the Principal Contractor.

Providing a Site Induction

Suitable site inductions should be provided by the [Principal] Contractor, this may be in groups or given to individuals as they start work. Where there is only one Contractor on site, Site Inductions are still a necessary part of the Construction Phase and should cover all the health and safety risks associated with the site. While each Site Induction will differ from project to project, typical topics that should be covered may be:

  1. The Commitment to Health and Safety by the Contractor
  2. Basic details of the project and the anticipated outcome
  3. What is the management structure on the site – who are the relevant contacts within the organisation
  4. What are site specific health and safety risks (overhead electricity, trees on site, watercourses nearly, railways etc)
  5. How will health and safety on site be controlled via site rule, how will pedestrians and vehicles be segregated, what is the minimum PPE standard, how will deliveries to site be managed, how will temporary electricity be provided, how will hazardous substances be stored)
  6. What are the procedures for accidents and who is responsible for first aid
  7. How are accidents on site recorded and how will RIDDOR events be reported to HSE
  8. When and what will be the subjects of training, toolbox task and task briefings.
  9. How will the workforce be consulted with
  10. What is each individual’s responsibility for health and safety while on site.

Safer Sphere appreciates that the CDM Regulations 2015 and Health and Safety Legislation can be a burden to small and medium-sized contractors. Such organisations rarely have the resource to employ internal Health and Safety professionals, meaning the burden is applied to those managing the organisation or supervising construction activities.

Our aim in this department is to reduce that burden by providing compliant Contractor CDM Support, which enables contractors to make Health and Safety a simple process and gives them the ability to concentrate their efforts in providing quality and cost-effective solutions in their chosen field. Whether you are a “contractor” or acting as “Principal Contractor”, Safer Sphere are here to help you!

Principal Contractor And Employees

What do you need to know about your employees as a Principal Contractor?

A Principal Contractor will need to appoint contractors and workers from different trades and at various stages of the construction process. It is their responsibility to ensure that all contractors and workers on the site have the necessary skills, knowledge, training and experience for the work they are carrying out.

Some contractors/workers will be very experienced in the job they do while others will be new to the profession. Additional information, instruction, training and supervision will be needed to support those who are still developing their experience to become self-sufficient in safe and healthy construction practices.

When a Principal Contractor employs or controls people doing work for them, under the CDM15 Regulations, they must make sure that:

  • they have the necessary skills, knowledge, training and experience to do the job safely and without putting their own or others’ health and safety at risk;
  • they are supervised and given clear instructions;
  • they have the right tools, equipment, plant, materials and protective clothing;
  • they and their representatives are made aware of health and safety issues;
  • arrangements for employees’ health surveillance are made where required.

Who is classed as an employee?

If a person working under the control and direction of a Principal Contractor is treated as self-employed for tax and national insurance purposes, they are still classed as an employee for health and safety purposes. Whether they are employed or self-employed, action needs to be taken to protect all people under their control.

It is common practice for Principal Contractors to appoint contractors, subcontractors and different trades to work on a construction project. When this is done it is essential that they:

  • check their health and safety capabilities;
  • give them the health and safety information they need for the work;
  • talk about the work with them before they start;
  • ensure that everything is provided and agreed before they start (for example safe scaffolds, plant and access to welfare facilities);
  • monitor their performance and remedy any shortcomings.

How is a contractor’s competence determined?

It is important that Principal Contractors make specific enquires about the basic health and safety capabilities of anyone that they are going to employ on a job.

Smaller Projects

On a smaller project, it would be appropriate to ask for evidence from any potential contractor that they are capable of carrying out the work. This could be done by simply asking if they have done this type of work before, requiring references from previous construction work, checking qualifications or training records or by asking them how they plan to carry out the work safely without risk to the health and safety of themselves or others.

Larger Projects

On more complicated or higher risk projects, it is necessary to make more in-depth enquiries. These enquiries can be achieved by using a Construction Pre-Qualification Questionnaire (PQQ), more commonly referred to as PAS 91. It comprises of a set of health and safety questions that can be asked as part of the pre-qualification process for construction projects to assess the construction supply chain.

Accurately accessing the competence of any potential contractor is essential. However, it is preferable to only make enquiries for information that will address the anticipated risks and capability of the supplier. If the pre-qualification questions are excessive or duplicated, it can take the attention away from the practical management of risks.

 

Management and Supervision

Once the competency of the contractor has been established, appropriate management and supervision throughout the project must be decided and agreed.

Those managing and supervising the work must have the right mix of skills, knowledge, training and experience. There must be an adequate number of supervisors to reflect the size of the project and workforce. The appointed supervisor working on the site will not only need to be familiar with the type of work planned but will also have to provide the level of supervision required to reflect the level of risk associated with the work. The degree of supervision required will be determined by the level of supervision provided by the contractors themselves. Other additional factors to be aware of is the skill level, knowledge, training and experience of the contractor.

 

Why is it important to engage with Contractors and Workers?

Consultation with all levels of the workforce is crucial to successfully manage health and safety on site. Key information on health and safety risks, including relevant parts of the construction phase plan, need to be shared with contractors. These vital pieces of information should be communicated to workers through induction and worker engagement. The process should be two-way, giving both parties, (or their safety representatives) an opportunity to contribute to decision making.

Engaging Contractors

On a busy construction site, there may be multiple contractors working in close proximity to each other. The Principal Contractor has a responsibility to ensure safe working, co-ordination and co-operation between contractors; this communication is essential to ensure that all contractors and workers on the project are aware of:

  • what has to be done and what is expected of them,
  • when it will be done,
  • how it will be done safely and without risk to anyone’s

Effective coordination will help reduce any possible risks that could occur by contractors working in close proximity on site. It enables different trades to access shared facilities, e.g. scaffolding, without compromising the safety on site.

This coordination of work can be addressed at site meetings when representatives of all contractors are present, and co-operation should be discussed when a new activity or construction phase begins.

Engaging workers

Health and Safety can be managed in a practical way when collaboration with workers is undertaken; this partnership is important because it:

  • helps with the identification of workplace risks;
  • makes sure health and safety controls are practical;
  • increases the level of commitment to working in safe and healthy environment.

Workplaces, where the workers are all involved in helping to make decisions about health and safety, tend to have less incidents. Workers must be consulted, in good time, on health and safety matters and it doesn’t matter whether the workplace is unionised or not. In workplaces where a trade union is recognised, this will be carried out through trade union health and safety representatives. In non-unionised workplaces, consultation can either be direct or through other elected representatives. Consultation involves employers not only providing the relevant information to workers but also listening to them and taking into account what they say before making decisions that affect their health and safety.

Issues that workers should be consulted on include:

  • risks arising from their work;
  • risks from others or the environment they are working in;
  • proposals to manage and/or control these risks;
  • the best ways of providing information and training.

Effective communication and consultation at all levels will help to improve the overall health and safety of everyone working in construction.

 

 

BIM and CDM15

The Future Of CDM And BIM

What Is BIM?

BIM or Building Information Modelling is the name given to a process of creating a detailed digital model of a build asset. From design through to construction and even hand over, a detailed collaborative model of a building can be created and accessed by anyone involved with the design, construction and maintenance of the project.

Think of a building information model in terms of a 3D digital model that not only gives a detailed visual of the building but also contains dimensions, materials used, service and maintenance instructions, material life spans, load bearings, safe working information and more.

Why Do We Need BIM?

Over 2 million people work in the UK construction industry, a figure that represents around 7% of the national workforce. Despite this, the construction industry accounts for around 25% of fatalities in the workplace and a statistically higher number of occupational diseases than any other industry. It’s thought that effective BIM implementation can help reduce these figures.

In addition, if BIM is implemented effectively during the design stages then it will enable CDM duty holders to identify risks in advance and therefore reduce costs considerably. After all, accidents and last minute changes are expensive.

The Future Of CDM And BIM

Identifying risk is the key element of CDM15. If the design stage can utilise digital modelling then many more risks can be identified. From clash detections on electrical cable and pipe runs to the movement of raw materials across the site during the different construction phases.

As BIM software becomes more developed, it’s entirely possible that the entire construction process can be run in virtual reality to detect any conflict with access platforms, cranes, and other construction equipment and processes. A timeline can then be decided to deliver maximum value, minimum construction time and fewer H&S risks.

BIM systems can aid Architects by automatically checking against current health and safety legislation on such things as where safety glass is needed, what the minimum headroom on a stairwell is and so on.

Building Information Modelling isn’t new. In fact as early as 2011, the UK Government published it’s Construction Strategy, the prime aim of which was to reduce the cost of public sector assets by 20%, one of the means of achieving this was to enable all the supply chain to collaborate in a 3D BIM on all government-funded projects by 2016.

The construction division of the HSE is committed to researching how BIM can improve health and safety across projects of all sizes. In addition, the BSI has published a specification (PAS 1192-6:2018)for collaborative sharing and use of structured Health & Safety information using BIM.

How Important is BIM?

You may, depending on your age, remember people asking the same question about word processors, computers, and the internet. BIM is in its early stages in the UK but is being used extensively around the world. Standards are still being designed and the coming months and years will see industry standard single BIM systems that are capable of delivering slick digital records to the client at the end of a project.

CAD drawings, PDFs and multiple digital files will be as outdated as floppy disks in a just a few years.

Building Information Modelling is here to stay, but unlike other technologies, if implemented correctly it will reward the construction industry with fewer health and safety incidents, higher profits and lower costs.

CDM Legal Actions

The legal implications of ignoring the CDM15 Regulations

Has anyone been prosecuted in Construction since CDM15 was introduced?

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have analysed information relating to potential breaches in Health and Safety Regulations on construction projects. The HSE act as the police service for all of the industry and provide enforcement notice data (prohibition and improvement notices) on their website. This information is available for all stakeholders to view and remains accessible.

Contractors must be aware that HSE Inspectors can attend site whether invited or uninvited. There may be a planned blitz on specific issues, for example, the HSE in Liverpool have recently carried out planned spot checks on several refurbishment projects in educational facility sector. Inspectors can also carry out unannounced inspections following concerns raised by site workers or members of the public.

Who has responsibilities under Health and Safety Regulations?

Health and Safety law places duties on employers and workers to consider their own safety and that of others. The principal law is the ‘Health and Safety at Work Act 1974’, with The Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015 (CDM15) relating directly to the Act. Clients, Principal Designers, Principal Contractors, Designers and the Self Employed each have responsibilities as duty holders for Health and Safety, some overlap, while others are specific to a particular group. The regulations work with strong direction and guidance and come in various forms including:

  • Approved Codes of Practice;
  • HSE Website;
  • Various Trade Organisations and;
  • Competent Advice.

Any individual or organisation that wishes to remain compliant with the law and avoid punitive measures and sanctions should use these resources.

If an organisation does not comply with CDM, or an individual within that organisation is identified as wilfully breaching any regulation, such parties should expect to be investigated and if the case is strong enough, will be prosecuted.

New sentencing guidelines introduced on 1st February 2016 introduced higher fines and prison sentences for anyone breaches the CDM regulations. These penalties can range from fines of up to ten million pounds or even imprisonment for up to two years for more serious breaches.

While some might argue that regulation alone is not the answer to the problem of Construction Health, Safety and Welfare, Health and Safety law continues to reinforce all we do in construction. The law is the law, and duty holders will be judged upon whether they have interpreted their role and carried out their responsibilities correctly. Regulations can be complex, and construction companies and design practices can put heavy resources into interpreting the requirements of the law correctly, but without competent guidance, this could be wasted time and money no matter how well-intentioned.

Who will be prosecuted?

It is no secret that while the HSE carry out inspections for breaches of the CDM regulations across all project sizes and companies, it is the larger sites that most attention is being paid to and inspected. Larger construction sites mean more tiers of supply chain with a pyramid of potential breaches and perpetrators. In an age where funding to the HSE is at a relative low and ‘Fee for Intervention’ (FFI) costs make up the deficit, some cynics may say that to ensure the HSE’s survival in its present form they should follow the money. The truth of the matter is SME’s, and sole traders can also be targeted at any time.

It is a fact that the larger the project, the greater the numbers of people employed and consequently more people could be harmed if poor controls on site are in place. These larger employers are punishable by very large fines under the current sentencing guidelines. Large fines will make headlines in trade press and if the company is large enough, national media outlets. This public shaming could act as a deterrent to smaller companies, but that said, there is still an element of the construction industry that will say “that will never happen to us”. Filtering through the lists of Enforcement Notices shows that is not necessarily the case with SME’s and Sole Traders being named as the recipient of the notice. Even when fines are scaled down to reflect the turnover of a business, fines for serious breaches could easily liquidate an otherwise thriving business.

A recent search of the HSE’s List of Enforcement Notices found that there were 3306 notices served under CDM15. 2335 of these were improvement notices, the rest being prohibition notices. Lack of Principal Contractor, insufficient Welfare arrangements, and omission of a Construction Phase Plan are typical reasons for serving improvement notices. The majority of prohibition notices were for potential breaches of the Working at Height Regulations.

It might be the case that the operative on site is identified as carrying out an illegal action thereby putting themselves or others at risk. If an investigation is carried out, the inspectors will always work up the hierarchy of command to establish who is responsible for that operative.

So, even if the breach was a willful deviation by an individual, the company (or in the case of a larger supply chain companies) will all have their day in court if a serious breach resulting in death or serious injury occurs.

Yes, the individual may have taken on a risk knowing the dangers, but the organisation will be required to explain how competency is measured and whether the vetting was robust enough.

A self-employed contractor, a white van man for example, before to the changes seen in CDM15, had never previously been expected to produce a Construction Phase Plan. They are unlikely to have the HSE’s web page bookmarked to keep up with changes in legislation, so it is the responsibility of those higher up the supply chain to ensure that these smaller working groups are involved in the cultural change.

The whole project team should buy into Health and Safety as an essential part of their business model. CDM can be very difficult to understand to the average worker on site if it is not presented in a format that all workers, at all levels of responsibility and ability, can understand. Several methods can be employed to get workers to adopt CDM without having to understand every part of the CDM Regulations. Strong management, enthusiastic supervision and regular refresher training will all contribute to a safer and healthier construction environment.

What is PAS 91?

What is PAS 91 and how does it relate to the construction industry?

What is PAS 91?

PAS 91 stands for Publicly Available Specification for prequalification questionnaires in construction-related procurement. It was commissioned by the Government and developed by the British Standards Institute (BSI) and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BSI). Following its launch in October 2010, it was seen as a positive step towards addressing the issue that many businesses face when completing Pre-Qualification Questionnaires (PQQ’s). It has undergone two revisions, one in 2013 and more recently in December 2017.

What are the aims of PAS 91?

PAS 91 provides a standard set of questions that can be asked by construction clients, buyers of potential contractors and suppliers as part of the pre-qualification process for construction projects.
The document aims to reduce the time and cost associated with completing PQQ’s, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses.

It does this by helping to streamline the tendering process for suppliers by:

• reducing the need for completing multiple prequalification processes;
• reducing the time taken to interpret and answer questions so better responses can be given;
• increasing the confidence that the form is completed correctly;
• allowing more time so more bids can be tendered;
• increasing the likelihood that the prequalification process is participated in;
• freeing up resources that could be used in a potentially more profitable activity;
• allowing SME’s to compete for business with large organisations without the resource/cost burden of the procurement process.

When bidding for a construction project, at any one time, there may be multiple suppliers throughout the supply chain. They all want to show that their skills, knowledge and experience would deem them suitable to deliver the project. The presence of different types of questionnaires, written in many different formats, can lead to unnecessary time, money and effort being spent by the buyer when trying to read, compare and evaluate the contents.

The use of PAS 91 may benefit buyers and their agents by:

• reducing the time spent creating pre-qualification questionnaires;
• improving the quality of the responses received;
• increasing more competition due to the likelihood of more suppliers bidding;
• increasing the number of buyers following good practice (although there are no official means of getting certified, buyers can demonstrate that they follow minimum government standards for construction procurement).

The universal use of PAS 91 could also help to raise the overall standard of communication, understanding and supplier capability across the construction sector.

What is the structure of PAS 91?

There are three parts to PAS 91. One section is made up of mandatory questions that must be asked by the buyer that cover commercial aspects of the company. They include information such as company structure, contact details, financial and health and safety information. There are specific questions to answer depending on whether you are a contractor, designer or service provider. To remain compliant, these questions must use the same wording and appear in the same order.

The next section contains optional questions relating to certain areas of the company, such as Environmental Management, Quality Management, Policies on Equal Opportunities and Diversity and Policy on Building Information Modelling (BIM).

The third section contains a framework for asking a set of additional project-specific questions that establish professional or technical ability. These questions should be chosen carefully to reduce any unnecessary documentation and only request information that is relevant and proportionate to the contract.

How does Safety Schemes in Procurement (SSIP) relate to PAS 91?

Safety Schemes in Procurement (SSIP) was founded in 2009 to help SME’s by developing transparent, simple and strategic procurement. Supported by the HSE, SSIP aims to streamline prequalification and encourage straightforward mutual recognition between its Member Schemes. Many suppliers, contractors and designers are registered with an SSIP Member and below are just some of the well-known members and supporters that are accepted:

• CHAS (Construction Health and Safety)
• Acclaim
• Constructionline
• APS (Association for Project Safety)
• SMAS (Safety Management Advisory Service)

These assessment providers can also benefit from the use of PAS 91. It can reduce the time spent on having to develop and refine their own questions and will release more time, so they can focus on developing and selling added value services.

Is PAS 91 a requirement of Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015?

When considering CDM15, the guidance does not make the use of PAS 91 compulsory. As the SSIP core criteria for assessments are aligned to this government-backed construction pre-qualification document, it ensures that there is consistency within supply chain management.

Since the implementation of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 and the Public Contracts Regulations 2015, PAS 91 has been amended to ensure that it is aligned with the new legislation. It also now addresses the requirements of the European Single Procurement Document (ESPD).
PAS 91:2013 +A1:2017 is the latest version and is more closely aligned with the standard Selection Questionnaire and ESPD. Before this version was published, contracting authorities were required to carry out a ‘pick and mix’ style process, selecting sections from the standard Selection Questionnaire and PAS 91:2013 in an attempt to produce a standard selection/pre-qualification document for procuring works.

The update to PAS 91:2013 has resulted in questions about supplier identity and financial information being amended. These changes now reflect the approach of Part 1 of the Selection Questionnaire, and there are additional tables included in the document for public sector purchasers to use. They list the mandatory and discretionary grounds for exclusion set out in the 2015 Public Contracts Regulations with suppliers required to self-declare.

Has PAS 91 fulfilled its aim?

The overall aim of implementing PAS 91 was to address the problems faced by small and medium-sized businesses when it came to completing a variety of different PQQ’s for different clients. As discussed, the framework set out in PAS 91 allows buyers to use a standardised questionnaire that is familiar to contractors, designers and service providers alike. The latest revision of PAS 91 has brought it in line with the recently updated Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015, and this ensures that any health and safety issues are considered during the development of the construction project.

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Contractor duties- CDM15

Contractors and the Construction Design and Management regulations 2015

Management of Health and Safety on Construction projects is governed by the content of The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (CDM15). CDM15 applies to all construction work, and this includes

  • building,
  • demolition,
  • extensions,
  • repair and maintenance.

While a Principal Contractor may be in the driver’s seat during the Construction Phase of a project, they may not have the resources to complete the construction, contracting out the development to other specialist contractors. The actual work of building and maintaining a structure will usually be aided by the Contractor.

Contractors come in many forms from sole traders to large businesses. A Contractor is anyone who controls and manages the work that construction workers do.

What is a Contractors Duty under CDM15?

Where a Contractor is engaged in a construction contract, his immediate duty is to plan, manage and monitor any work that is carried out without risk to health and safety. This is a phrase that is echoed through CDM15 from the responsibilities of the Client to those of the Worker. The Contractor has a duty, on projects with more than one contractor, to coordinate the work they do with other members of the construction team. Any instructions given by the Principal Designer or Principal Contractor should be considered promptly. On occasions where the Contractor is the only one on the project, it will be the responsibility of that sole Contractors to prepare the Construction Phase Plan.

What are the Contractor’s requirements under CDM15?

The role of a Contractor will depend on the number of other contractors on a project at any one time. If the project has more than one contractor involved, the Contractor must coordinate their work with the other Contractors involved. If they are acting as the only Contractor on site, then they must prepare a Construction Phase Plan and make sure that no unauthorised entry can be made. In some cases, Contractors may also have a design role in a project.

Managing the Work

Managing work as a Contractor will mean delivering the clients brief. During the pre-construction phase, information will be collated by the Principal Designer. This details will be provided to the Contractor along with other information that is put together as part of the Construction Phase Plan by the Principal Contractor. All this design and construction information will be used by the Contractor to plan the work, for example where there are overhead obstructions or any areas where digging is forbidden.

Competency of Workers

Workers who represent the Contractor should be competent in that they have the correct level of skills, knowledge, training and experience to carry out the role. Supervision and a point of contact should be provided by the Contractor to all workers in case of any work issues. There should be an adequate number of supervisors on site at any time that reflects the number of workers and the task they are doing. The Supervisor is an integral part of any construction and CDM15 as it is this role that transmits information between workers and the Principal Contractor or Principal Designer. The supervisor should have experience in the type of work being planned, and the degree to which the team need to be supervised will be dependent on the skills and knowledge of the team.

Tools and Equipment

It is the Contractors responsibility to provide workers with adequate plant, tools and equipment, including hand and power tools that are free from damage and suitable for the task at hand. Any materials used should be safe, maintained and disposed of safely. Any latent harm should be identified and the correct precautions taken. While recognised as the last line of defence in the hierarchy of control, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) should be provided that fits the user thus providing the correct level of protection. This may also include eye protection, respiratory protection and gloves while on task if identified during a risk assessment.

Information and Instruction

The Contractor should pass on relevant information and instructions to all workers. This information should be provided in sufficient time to allow all workers enough time to carry out the work. Using the Supervisor to brief workers or where tasks are considered high risk, a written ‘Safe System of Work’ should be used, with the planned method of construction or installation. The work carried out will need to be coordinated with other Contractors and the Principal Contractor. Where a Contractor intends to sub-contract part of the work, they should inform the Principal Contractor immediately. How information is exchanged between other Contractors, including the Principal Contractor, should be agreed before work begins to allow all parties to manage health and safety while on site and beyond.

Appointing Workers and Sub-contractors

All workers should have the necessary skills, knowledge, training and experience to complete a task or project safely, without risk to their health or the health and safety of others. This will include ensuring that the workforce is trained to an acceptable level for the work they do. As always, supervision is an essential means of monitoring the work and ensuring that the workers are following clear instructions.

Additional information, instruction, training and supervision will be needed to support those who are still developing their experience in order to become self-sufficient in construction practices.

When employing a sub-contractor or another trade to carry out part of the work, the competency and capabilities of the workers to be used must be established. References for the type of work to be carried out should be requested by the Principal Contractor, checking qualifications and training records. There are also Accreditation schemes that Contractors can use to be more accessible to Principal Contractors and Clients as part of a Pre-qualification Questionnaire. Sub-contract workers should be given all the relevant information they need to carry out the task safely; the workers should be briefed by the Contractor before any work starts, this should include ensuring that all access and egress including working platforms and scaffolds are as specified and fit for purpose. Sub-contractors should have their work monitored, and any shortcomings remedied.

Co-operating with Duty Holders

As stated previously, Contractors play a key role in communicating with Principal Contractors and other workers and contractors on site. All work carried out by a Contractor on site could affect the health and safety of not only workers but of parties such as members of the general public. To ensure health and safety apply to all, it will require proper coordination of the work; this can only succeed if a good communication flow is achieved and everyone involved in the project co-operates to reach a collective objective.

What Additional Duties Does A Contractor Have Under CDM Regulations?

How Contractors can consult with Employees

There must be a collaboration between the Contractor as an employer and the workers that are on task to get individuals to work safely.

Involving workers in the decision-making process with regards to health and safety tends to lead to practical solutions.

Practical solutions:

  • Speak to workers about their experience and knowledge about a task or job.
  • Increase the potential commitment and buy-in from workers to any Health and Safety topics.
  • Are more easily fostered by the workforce,

 

When experienced workers are consulted on matters of health and safety, it will be easier to:

  • Spot workplace hazards
  • Implement realistic controls
  • Avoid controls being seen as a burden or barrier to completing a task.

 

Consultation is a proven means of managing Health and Safety on construction projects.

 

Consultation is about employers giving information to workers that is part of the Construction Phase Plan. It also requires the Contractor as an employer to listen to workers and consider their experience in the field. Any previous issues that workers may have come up against in previous jobs may have had a solution that has not been considered on this project.

 

Consultation with the workforce should cover:

 

  • The hazards associated with their own work
  • The hazards associated with the work of others on the project
  • Environmental risks that modern construction techniques may harbour,
  • The way these risks are managed
  • How information and training can be used to protect relevant workers from specific risks.

Preparing the Construction Phase Plan

Preparing the Construction Phase Plan is the responsibility of the Principal Contractor and should be made up of the following:

  • Description of how health and safety will be managed during construction and will contain information that is relevant to all Contractors working on the project.
  • Should be available to anyone who wants to see it and therefore the information contained in it should be clear and easily understood with all superfluous information removed.
  • Should consider issues such as logistics, working at height, hazardous substances, demolition and groundworks.
  • Should be developed before any site is set up or work begins.

While it is the duty of the Principal Contractor to develop the Construction Phase Plan, it is the responsibility of the Client to ensure that the Construction Phase Plan is in place before the work begins.

Providing Welfare Facilities

Welfare includes the provision of toilets, both lit and ventilated and suitable for both sexes. With more and more female staff working on Construction sites, male and female bathrooms are thankfully becoming more common, but are open to abuse if not managed correctly.

Washing facilities with hot and cold water, soap or skin detergent with a means of drying hands should be close to the toilet facility. Separately, but just as important are rest facilities which should be a room with tables and chairs provided and with drinking water and cups as a bare minimum.

Where workers will need to change clothes or dry their workwear, a separate changing/drying room with lockers should be provided. It should be noted that while the lockers should be provided by the Principal Contractor, it is commonly the responsibility of the Contractor to supply their own key and lock.

The supply of Welfare Facilities is part of CDM15. Where one Contractor is charged with a Construction Project, the Welfare Facilities should be suitable and sufficient for the size of the project and should be available from when construction starts until the end of the project.

Where more than one contractor is working on a project, it is the Principal Contractor who is ultimately responsible for ensuring that welfare facilities are provided. It is the Clients responsibility to ensure that suitable arrangements are made for workers by the Principal Contractor.

Providing a Site Induction

Suitable site inductions should be provided by the Principal Contractor, this may be in groups or given to individuals as they start work. Where there is only one Contractor on site, Site Inductions are still a necessary part of the Construction Phase and should cover all the health and safety risks associated with the site. While each Site Induction will differ from project to project, typical topics that should be covered are:

  1. The Commitment to Health and Safety by the Contractor
  2. Basic details of the project and the anticipated outcome
  3. What is the management structure on the site – who are the relevant contacts within the organisation
  4. What are the site-specific health and safety risks (overhead electricity, trees on site, watercourses nearly, railways )
  5. How will health and safety on site be controlled via site rule, how will pedestrians and vehicles be segregated, what is the minimum PPE standard, how will deliveries to site be managed, how will temporary electricity be provided, how will hazardous substances be stored)
  6. What are the procedures for accidents and who is responsible for first aid
  7. How are accidents on site recorded and how will RIDDOR events be reported to HSE
  8. When and what will be the subjects of training, toolbox task and task briefings.
  9. How will the workforce be consulted with
  10. What is each individual’s responsibility for health and safety while on site

There is a requirement under CDM for Contractors to consult and co-operate with other duty holders, such as the Principal Designer, Principal Contractor, other Contractors, designers and suppliers of goods, labour and materials. It is not the responsibility of one element of the Project supply chain to ensure that health and safety on construction sites are realised it is only when all parties work together that the requirements of the CDM Regulations be realised. Contractors are in a position where they will be pulling lots of elements together to give the Client a structure that shows attention to detail and will be safe to use beyond the construction phase.

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Client Duties CDM

What Are The Clients Duties CDM15?

Part 2 of the Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015 (CDM15) covers Client duties in relation to the pre-construction and the construction phases. Sufficient time and resources must be made for managing a project. Arrangements made by a Client can be considered suitable if the work on the construction site can be carried out without risk to health or safety of any person affected by the project and that the minimum welfare facilities required for construction sites (Schedule 2 of the Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015) are provided in respect to anyone carrying out the work. It is the client’s duty to see that these arrangements are reviewed throughout the project and that they are maintained to the recognised standard.

Managing Projects

During the pre-construction phase, the Client must provide information to each and every designer or contractor who has been appointed or is being considered for appointment. The client must ensure that the [Principal] Contractor draws up a construction phase plan and that the Principal Designer prepares a Health and Safety file for the project appropriate to the characteristics of the project which must contain information relating to the project which is likely to be needed during any subsequent project, such as extension, refurbishment or demolition, to ensure the health and safety of any person in the future. Every time new or appropriate information becomes available, the Health and Safety file will be revised with appropriate relevancy. It is the responsibility of the Client to ensure that the Health and Safety file is kept available for inspection for any person who may require to see it in order to comply with any relevant legal requirements.

It is the duty of the Client to take reasonable steps to ensure that the Principal Designer complied with all Principal Designer duties and that the Principal Contractor complies with the Principal Contractor duties set out in CDM15. Should the Client not appoint a Principal Designer or Principal Contractor, the duties of these roles will automatically become the responsibility of the Client. Should the Client sell or lease the property to a third party, that is if one client disposes interest in the structure to another, it is the responsibility to provide the Health and Safety file to the person acquiring the client’s interest in the structure.

Where there are many clients involved in the structure, they may agree in writing that for the purpose of the CDM Regulations one client will be responsible; the only Client for the Construction project. Only the Client(s) agreed in writing are subject to the duties owed by a client under the CDM Regulations. While a person with a duty or function under these Regulations must cooperate with any other person working on or in relation to a project, at the same or an adjoining construction site, to the extent necessary to enable any person with a duty or function to fulfil that duty or function. Any person who is required by these Regulations to provide information or instruction must ensure the information or instruction is comprehensible and provided as soon as is practicable.

Appointment Of The Principal Designer And The Principal Contractor

Where it is reasonably foreseeable that more than one contractor will be working on a project, the client must appoint in writing a Principal Designer to control the pre-construction phase and one contractor to oversee the construction; a Principal Contractor. These appointments must be made as soon as possible, and certainly must be in place before the construction phase begins, or as previously stated, the duties and responsibilities of the Principal Designer and Principal Contractor will become the responsibility of the Client.

HSE Notification

Where a construction project is to last longer than 30 working days, have more than 20 workers at any point in the project or exceed 500 person days, then it is Notifiable. Where a project is notifiable, it is the Clients responsibility to give notice to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) in writing before the construction phase begins.

The details of CDM15 Schedule 1 must be contained in the Notice:

Regulation 6
SCHEDULE 1
Particulars to be notified under regulation 6 (Notification)
1. The date of forwarding the notice.
2. The address of the construction site or precise description of its location.
3. The name of the local authority where the construction site is located.
4. A brief description of the project and the construction work that it entails.
5. The following contact details of the client: name, address, telephone number and (if available) an email address.
6. The following contact details of the principal designer: name, address, telephone number and (if available) an email address.
7. The following contact details of the principal contractor: name, address, telephone number and (if available) an email address.
8. The date planned for the start of the construction phase.
9. The time allocated by the client under regulation 4(1) for the construction work.
10. The planned duration of the construction phase.
11. The estimated maximum number of people at work on the construction site.
12. The planned number of contractors on the construction site.
13. The name and address of any contractor already appointed.
14. The name and address of any designer already appointed.
15. A declaration signed by or on behalf of the client that the client is aware of the client duties under these Regulations.

This notice must be clearly displayed in construction site office in a form that can be read by any worker, any changes to the Notice must be updated as necessary.

Application To Domestic Clients

Previously left out of the CDM Regulations, Domestic Clients are now enshrined in law under CDM15. Where a client is domestic, the client’s duties must be carried out by a contractor where there is only one contractor, a Principal Contractor where there is more than one Contractor or a Principal Designer where there is a written agreement for the undertaking from the Principal Designer. If a domestic client does not make appointments of a Principal Contractor or Principal Designer, the designer in control of the pre-construction phase becomes the Principal Designer and the contractor in charge of the Construction Phase becomes the Principal Contractor. In a domestic situation, the client will not have duties under CDM15.

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