New responsibilities for managing construction projects will fall to domestic clients from April (i.e. those who procure extensions, etc for their own homes). These domestic clients were excluded under CDM 2007. However, the impact on domestic clients will be eased by deeming that either an appointed building contractor or designer (e.g. architect) – will be responsible for the domestic client responsibilities.
Where there is no more than one contractor working on a domestic project at any time the contractor will be required to take the following actions:
- Arrangements for safety management and acceptable welfare
- Maintain and review these arrangements throughout the project
- Provide preconstruction information to designers and others
- Draw up a construction phase plan
- Notify larger projects to the HSE
These responsibilities are in addition to any specific contractor duties included in the contract.
Where it is foreseeable that more than one contractor will be working on a project the domestic client will be required to appoint a Principal Designer (CDM-PD) and a Principal Contractor (CDM-PC).
If the domestic client fails to make these appointments they will be deemed to fall to the first designer and first contractor appointed. As Domestic clients are unlikely to make the required appointments, these new duties will most likely fall to the project architect and main contractor.
The main legal responsibility of designers under CDM requires that designers seek to avoid foreseeable risk during design. This duty in the 2007 version is heavily qualified and can be performed so far as is reasonably practicable, taking due account of other relevant design considerations. Under the new 2015 regulation the qualification has been deleted with the effect of making the designer duty far more absolute.
The principal changes will be as follows:
- Strengthening of client duties
- Introduction of domestic clients
- Replacement of CDM-coordinator by a principal designer for the planning, managing, monitoring and coordination of pre-construction phase health & safety
- Principal designer and principal contractor will be required on all projects where there will be more than one contractor working on the project
- Replacement of explicit requirement for duty-holder competence with need for appropriate information, instruction, training & supervision
Change to the HSE notification level will now only be required for projects lasting more than 30 days and involving more than 20 workers simultaneously.
Technical standards will remain essentially unchanged from those relating to CDM 2007. The HSE targeting and enforcement policy also remains unchanged, and is likely to focus on smaller contractors.
When CDM 2015 comes into force on 6th April 2015, there are transitional arrangements in place that will run for six months to 6th October 2015.
The role of the CDM-Coordinator, under CDM 2007, will be replaced by a Principal Designer. This means that the responsibility for coordination of the preconstruction phase, which is crucial to the management of any successful construction project, will rest with a member of the ‘design’ team. The new regulations recognise the influence and importance of the client as the head of the supply chain and they are best placed to set standards throughout a project. As a result of the name change, WCCL will no longer offer formal CDMC services, however we will continue to provide the same support service to clients and architects/designers alike, including when this onus is placed on the contractor.
With CDM Regulations 2015 affecting all construction projects, we will be extending our health & safety advisory support service to cover these changes to contractors and Architects/designers.
For further information on these services you can contact Wilkinson Construction Consultants.