What are the Construction (Design & Management) (CDM) Regulations 2015?
The CDM Regulations 2015
The Construction (Design & Management) Regulations 2015 have been updated, and came into effect on 6th April 2015.
The updated Regulations place increased responsibilities on the three main parties in a building project – the Client, the Designer, and the Builder. Importantly for the first time, the domestic market has been brought into the mix. This is because statistically there are more injuries and fatalities on smaller, previously unregulated projects than on the larger ones. So the HSE has decided to address this issue by requiring all projects to have someone overseeing health, safety and welfare in both the pre-start and construction phases.
The Principal Designer
In accordance with CDM 2015 the new role of Principal Designer (PD) has been created. This role replaces the CDM Coordinator (CDMC) from the old regulations. This is not just a name change; instead the role of the PD is intended to be a pivotal one in every building project from the smallest alterations to the largest new build. Every project, whether it is creating a new doorway into a domestic garage, a speculative developer building houses on a garden plot or a company expanding into a new factory unit, needs to have a Principal Designer appointed by the Client.
A suitable PD must “be a designer on the project and be in a position to have control over the design and planning stage”.
The PD will usually be an organisation or, on smaller projects, an individual with:
• a technical knowledge of the construction industry, relevant to the project
• an understanding of how health and safety is managed through the design process
• the skills to be able to oversee health and safety during the pre-construction phase of the project and the ongoing design
The PD must plan, manage and monitor the co-ordination of the pre-construction phase, including any preparatory work carried out for the project. The PD must:
• assist the client in identifying, obtaining and collating the pre-construction information
• provide pre-construction information to designers, principal contractor and contractors
• ensure that designers comply with their duties and co-operate with each other
• liaise with the principal contractor for the duration of the appointment
• prepare the health and safety file or work with the principal contractor to do so
In common with other duty holders under CDM 2015 the PD may find it useful to bring a former CDMC into the team to help with compliance, and to make sure that the client is doing what they need to do.
After the CDM Regulations 2015 came into force on 6 April 2015 there was a transitional period that ran from 6 April 2015 to 6 October 2015. If your project started before 6 April 2015 and you did not start the construction phase and a CDM co-ordinator has not been appointed, then it would be the responsibility of the client to hire a PD as soon as they could.
If a CDM co-ordinator has already been hired for the project then a PD must be appointed to replace the CDM co-ordinator by the end of the transitional period; 6 October 2015. This would not have been necessary if the construction project finished before 6th October 2015.