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Written by
on 10 May 2011


Construction Design and Maintenance Regulations

As a client if you are about to alter or extend a building or structure, thinking of putting up a new one or demolishing an existing one, then the Construction Design and Management Regulations 2007 place a number of specific duties on you. The aim of these Regulations is to make Health & Safety an essential and integral part of the planning and management of projects and to make sure that everyone works together to reduce the risk to the Health & Safety of those who work on the structure, who may be affected by these works, or who will use it as a place or work once it’s completed.

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The CDM regulations separate construction projects into two types – dependent on how long they take to build and how many people are involved. The two types are:

  • Non-Notifiable Projects – where the project is likely to involve LESS THAN 30 days or 500 person days of construction work
  • Notifiable projects – where the project is likely to involve MORE THAN 30 days or 500 person days of construction work If you are in doubt, you should assume that the project is Notifiable

The Regulations mostly require you to ensure that a number of things are done rather than actually do them yourself. On Non-Notifiable Projects you can ask a Designer or Contractor for assistance or you can appoint someone to help you. On Notifiable projects the CDM Co-ordinator is there to help you carry out those duties and will advise you throughout the project on what needs to be done.

On all projects you must

  • Check competence and resources of all appointees (Designers, Contractors and other team members)
  • Co operate and coordinate with others involved in the project
  • Ensure there are suitable management arrangements in place throughout the project to ensure that construction work can be carried out safely
  • Check any workplace design will comply with the Workplace health safety and welfare regulations.
  • Allow sufficient time and resources for all stages of the project
  • Provide pre-construction information to designers and contractors
  • Check arrangements have been made by the contractor for suitable welfare facilities

In addition on Notifiable projects you must

  • Appoint CDM co-ordinator before significant design work is carried out to advise and assist with the clients duties under the regulations.
  • Provide information relating to the health and safety file to the CDM co-ordinator
  • Appoint principal contractor as soon as practicable to plan and manage the construction work.
  • Make sure that the construction phase does not start unless
    • There are suitable welfare facilities
    • A construction phase plan is in place.
  • Retain the health and safety file and make it available to anyone who may need it in the future. You must also update it whenever necessary and hand it to anyone who acquires an interest in the building.

If you fail to appoint a ‘CDM Co-ordinator’ or ‘Principal Contractor’ you will be legally liable for their duties and will be deemed to be carrying them out and you could leave yourself open to potentially very expensive civil action and a criminal prosecution by the HSE.

Getting the right people to do what they are supposed to do under these regulations is important you need to be sure that those you appoint are competent and capable of carrying out their work on your particular project. Veritas Consulting Management’s CDM co-ordinators are trained and qualified in health and safety and are registered members of the Association for Project Safety. Our staff can advise and assist you in carrying out all your duties under CDM 2007.

For Further information please contact us

About the author

David Cant is a Director at Veritas Consulting. The SME’s favourite go-to consultant for health and safety know-how. Bucket loads of experience. Fluent in practical advice. Solutionist with a brain you can pick. You can find him across social media on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.