10The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM 2015) came into force on the 6 April 2015 but included a transition period of six months until 6 October 2015. During the transition period clients had the choice of whether to use the old 2007 Regulations or the new 2015 Regulations. Most domestic clients selected to be under the old Regulations as their building works were unaffected. However, from the 6 October 2015 all domestic building works involving more than one contractor will require compliance with CDM 2015.
The regulations where there are more than one contractor involved require the architect/designer or another of the designers in the process to act as a Principal Designer and produce Pre-Construction Information. This PCI is then provided to the contractor who has to produce a Construction Phase Plan.
The Association of Project Safety has introduced a new qualification which can be achieved by examination to test members to ensure compliance with the new regulations and members holding the qualification RMaPS have passed an examination to confirm that they are qualified to act in the role of Principal Designer under the CDM 2015 Regulations.
Where the building works involve a single contractor the regulations can be met by reasonably simple paperwork involving a simple risk assessment of the work involved. Under the new regulations there is also a requirement to ensure that adequate facilities are provided for use by the contractor.
Taken as a whole the regulations provide for an improved health, safety and welfare of contractors working in the building industry by providing a framework for more planning to be undertaken before the building work commences. The provision of the PCI should highlight those areas particularly at risk whilst the Construction Phase Plan gives the contractor an opportunity to consider how he will deal with the high risk items before making ad hoc decisions of health and safety on site.
As a qualified RMaPS I can offer to be involved in projects. Provided that I can have an involvement in the design process by discussing matters with the architect/designer, I can take on the responsibilities of the Principal Designer without the need to visit the site. The new regulations allow for the role of the Principal Designer to be terminated once building works start on site and the contractor takes over in the role of Principal Contractor.
For further advice about the role of the Principal Designer and how we can act in this role please contact Nicholas Lewis of N J Lewis & Associates Ltd.