Michael Ellerby / Feature Articles


CDM 2015, new Construction Regulations

2015 CDM ChangesA summary of some of the key changes in CDM 2015 With update)

The new Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015 (CDM 2015) came into force at the start of April 2015. They apply to all building and construction projects, regardless of the size, duration and nature of the work. With these new regulations good quality, professional health and safety advice will be needed more than ever.

CDM Coordinator role disappears and a Principal Designer role is introduced

Under CDM 2015, the Client will need to appoint a Principal Designer for all projects involving more than one contractor (trade contractor) on site at one time. Any other designers appointed should not carry out any work beyond initial the design unless the Principal Designer has confirmed that the Client is aware of their duties. The new role of Principal Designer should help eliminate and/or reduce the risks to health and safety to those involved in the subsequent construction work and the maintenance and use of the building, facility or structure once it is completed. This role extends to the construction phase and involves liaising with the Principal Contractor and specialist designers.

The replacement of CDM co-ordinator (CDM 2007) by the principal designer (CDM 2015) means that the responsibility for coordination of the pre-construction phase – which is crucial to the management of any successful construction project – will rest with an existing member of the design team.

Principal Designer and Principal Contractor to be appointed, by the Client, for all projects with more than one “trade” Contractor on site

The Client must appoint both the Principal Designer and the Principal Contractor in writing. Otherwise, the Client will be deemed to be carrying out these roles. The new Regulations recognise the influence and importance of the client as the head of the supply chain and as the party best placed to set standards throughout a project.

Duties under the Regulations now apply to domestic projects

For domestic projects, it is proposed for projects involving more than one contractor that the Principal Contractor will normally assume the Client duties.

The domestic Client can choose to appoint the Principal Designer for the project. If, however, they do not make this appointment, the first Designer appointed during the preconstruction phase is the Principal Designer for the project. If so, the Principal Designer will be answerable to the Principal Contractor in their role as “Client” for the project and will be responsible for liaising with them.

Construction phase plan required for all projects

The Client must ensure that a Construction Phase Plan is provided by the Contractor or Principal Contractor and that it is in place before any works start.

Notification of Construction Projects

The Client is now responsible for notifying the HSE of projects before work commences.

The notification trigger (the point at which an F10 needs to be submitted to HSE) has been amended to 30 days and more than 20 persons on site or 500 man days,  before works commence,  if they will exceed 30 construction days with 20 or more workers working simultaneously or if the project exceeds.  Potentially, this means that some projects that were automatically notifiable under the previous Regulations may not need to be notified under CDM 2015.

Competence and Information, Instruction, Training and Supervision (IITS) requirements

Under CDM 2015, the Client will need to ensure those that are to be appointed (Designer, Contractor or Principal Contractor and Principal Designer) can demonstrate appropriate information, instruction,
training and supervision. Anyone working on a construction project should be able to demonstrate the capability and have the necessary resources to fulfil legal duties. They must provide sufficient information about the preparation, provision and, where necessary, revision of health and safety information such as Pre-Construction Information, Construction Phase Plans and Health & Safety File.

Update – May 2016

April 2015 saw CDM 2015, which promised a simplification of the construction regulations. It also saw the role of the CDMC replaced with Principal Designers. In truth, looking back over the year, it is hard to say how the construction sector has taken to the new legislation. It is also difficult to support the view that one of the main aims (to reduce the amount of paperwork generated) has been met. This may change when the first prosecution under CDM 2015 takes place.

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Michael acted as health and safety training consultant on Croner’s Health and Safety Training Resource, and also contributed a number of updates and in-depth articles to other publications, all to a high standard. Experienced and helpful, and always a pleasure to work with.

Tim Gilpin, Croner (Wolters Kluwer), Kingston-upon-Thames


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