Construction Design (and Management) Regulations
CDM - A Brief History
The Government was becoming increasingly concerned in the 1980's and early 1990's at the number of construction deaths which was disproportionate to other industries. It commissioned Sir Michael Latham to compile a report into the issues that faced construction workers. His report of 1994 entitled 'Constructing the Team' highlighted, amongst other things, that through teamwork and management of Health & Safety many deaths could be avoided.
The Construction Design and Management Regulations 1994 (and recent 2007, 2015 amendments) is a response to that document and places a formal responsibility for Health & Safety on team players in a construction project. The 'Team', as defined by Sir Michael Latham in his report, is anyone in a position to make decision or influence the outcome of the project. This typically includes the Client, Designer, Project Manager, Structural Engineer, Contractor, Electrical / Mechanical consultants and other consultants who contribute to the outcome of the project.
Does CDM Apply?
CDM 2015 applies to both Commercial and Domestic construction projects where there is more than one contractor working on the project. Where the works do not fall under CDM 2015 contractors still have their own duty in respect of Health & Safety.
Commercial projects, i.e. projects being carried out for profit or commercial reasons (Landlords) will be Notifiable to the HSE under the 2015 Regulations if:
Duration > 30 days AND more than 20 persons on site at any one time OR.....
Duration > 500 man days.
Can CDM be ignored?
It is a criminal offence (on a project that falls under the Regulations) for team players to undertake design and other duties without compliance with the Regulations. NOTE: Ignorance is no defence.
The Regulations do allow some design work to be conducted i.e. Feasibility studies and outline design work without applying the Regulations however as soon as the decision has been taken to commit to the project and it falls under the Regulations then legal duties are placed on the members of the Team.
- Appoint Principal Designer (PD) in writing (legal requirement). It is recommended that the PD appointment is made as soon as possible.
- Appoint a Principal Contractor (PC) in writing (legal requirement).
- Ensure that team members appointed are competent.
- Provide PD and PC with appropriate pre-construction information (asbestos survey report, services layout plans, ground reports, existing Health & Safety File etc.)
- Ensure that a Health & Safety File exists for the property.
- Ensure that adequate welfare facilities are available to the PC on site before permitting the project to start.
- Ensure that a Construction Phase Health & Safety Plan is in place prior to commencement on site.
- Plan, manage, coordinate and manage Health & Safety in the pre-construction phase
- Eliminate risks from the design where possible, make others aware of any remaining risks.
- Consider the life of the building and accommodate measures for future maintenance, safe access.
- Ensure that the HSE have been notified about the project (if project is notifiable).
- Help and advise the Client to assist in producing Pre-Construction Information for issue to other designers and tendering contractors.
- Produce or update (where there is an existing document) the Health & Safety File.
- Support the Client to help him / her comply with their duties.
Note: The CDM-Coordinator role no longer exists under CDM Regulations 2015
- Plan and manage the construction phase in consultation with other contractors on the project.
- Ensure that a Construction Phase Health & Safety Plan is compiled.
- Collate and issue information to the PD for the Health & Safety File.
- Make sure suitable welfare facilities are provided.
- Make sure all contractor personnel have had a suitable induction, have been made aware of any site hazards.
Please note that the above does not constitute all responsibilities and is only a selection of the key duties. We have focused on the Client predominantly as it is the Client who ultimately makes the key decisions in respect of the project and it's outcome.
It is essential that team members are familiar with their responsibilities. Should you wish to discuss any of this further please do not hesitate to contact us.
We are members of the Association for Project Safety which can provide additional information should you require.
Further information is available from the HSE.
What is Contract Administration?
Contract Administration is the administration of a project on behalf of the Client by a professional, the Contract Administrator (CA). ARP, through their years of experience, can take a project, on behalf of the Client, from inception through to completion. This frees up the Client to get on with their normal day to day activities with the knowledge that the contract is being professional administered.
There are several stages in the life of a construction project which are more accurately detailed in the RIBA Work Stages document (found here) however generalised under as follows:-
1. Feasibility - Initial ideas, outline design work providing various options for the Client.
2. Full design - each of the feasibility options have been appraised and one has been selected as the final solution.
3. Supporting drawings developed for submission to the Local Authority (Planning, Building Regulations, Listed Building Consent)
4. Specification prepared for tender to suitable Contractors.
5. Tender analysis following return of contractor's prices, recommendation made by CA to the Client as to most suitable Contractor.
6. Appointment of Contractor / preparation and issue of formal contract documents.
7. Pre-contract meeting with Client, Contract Administrator (CA) and appointed Contractor.
8. Works on site, weekly or fortnightly meeting between Client, CA and Contractor to ensure works progress as per design.
9. Final check on site by CA, snags identified and corrected, handed over to Client.
10. Project complete and enters defects period (usually 12 months) - any defects in works addressed by Contractor at no extra cost.
ARP can undertake all the above roles as Contract Administrator including design / drawings, Local Authority approvals, specification, tendering, contract documents, on-site administration, meetings, minutes and completion issues.
ARP can also advise on various other considerations to ensure that the Client is fully informed of their legal responsibilities e.g.
- Is Party Wall Etc Act 1996 applicable? ARP are Party Wall Surveyors.
- Have you considered Disabled Discrimination Act 1995 (and later amendments)? ARP undertake DDA Accessibility inspections.
- Will your Fire Risk Assessment require revision (or will you need a new one)? ARP undertake Fire Risk Assessments.
There are other considerations and the above are examples.
Benefits of employing a Contract Administrator
- Hassle factor removed from Client - CA will deal with the Contractor, financial issues and Local Authority.
- Client fully informed throughout the process via minutes, email, meetings.
- Any potential problems will be flagged up early so that these can be addressed in advance of them becoming an issue.
- Financial issues are administered by CA - contractor only paid for works actually done, no up-front payments.
- Contractor will be under a formal contract - this will ensure that there is focus on quality and that the works stay on programme.
- Defects period generally for 12 months - monies withheld from Contractor during defects period to ensure that any issues are fixed.
- The Client can get on with their day to day activities.
Health & Safety
ARP offer a Health & Safety / CDM 2015 Advisory service to Clients, Property Managers, Contracting organisations and similar bodies.
Typical services offered include:
- Health & Safety Inspections
- Acting as CDM 2015 Advisor to Architects, Contractors (ensuring compliance under the CDM Regulations)
- Assistance with compilation of Health & Safety Policies
- Compilation of Construction Phase Health & Safety Plans
- Compilation of works Method Statements
- Attendance of site meetings to advise on Health & Safety matters
Attention All Property Owners (non-domestic)
Are you aware that under the Occupiers Liability Act 1984 that you have a duty of care to remove or reduce (as far as practicable) potential Health & Safety risks or hazards on your premises to reduce the chance of someone becoming injured whilst on your premises. Note that that duty of care also extends to trespassers coming onto your property and that failure to do so may put you at risk of compensation claims and prosecution should someone get injured whilst on your premises.
ARP undertake Health & Safety inspections and compile comprehensive reports which not only identify any noted hazards but also offer advice on control measures to reduce or remove the hazard, all in compliance with requirements as set out in the Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999 and Health & Safety at Work Act 1974.
Please contact us for further details or for an informal chat.
ARP report on individual defects to a building whether it be a commercial or domestic property.
Should your building have a specific defect we are happy to attend site, carryout necessary investigations and report accordingly providing suggested remedial works. As per the recent commission under it is sometimes necessary to undertake intrusive investigations to get to the heart of the matter. Without undertaking exposure works on the example underneath a full appreciation of the issue and causes would not have been realised. In this case the cause of external cracking to brickwork walls was identified and suggested remedial works were advised to the Client.
Defective weathering to the parapet wall was permitting rainwater penetration into the brickwork walls where it was able to corrode the structural steelwork frame. As metal corrodes it expands. This expansion of the steelwork exerted pressures on the surrounding brickwork leading to cracking of brickwork encasing the steel frame.
Building Surveys (Structural Surveys)
ARP undertake Building Survey inspections and reporting on both domestic and commercial properties. These are often called Pre-Acquisition Surveys with respect to commercial properties.
This is typically on behalf of would be buyers who need to know the condition of the property and estimated cost of repairs to the building fabric ahead of the decision to purchase.
Our survey reports include a thorough discussion of the main building elements supported by photographs with supporting commentary so that the end user is clear on what is being discussed. Typically a reference sketch layout plan is included so that locations being discussed are again clear to the end user.
The reports will not include a valuation.
Additional report elements can be added as required by the Client. For example, the end user might want a Planned Maintenance schedule included in the survey report which might show expected repair expenditure required over say the next 10 years.
Please contact ARP and we are happy to discuss and develop the survey and report to suit your requirements.
Please note that ARP do not undertake Home Buyer's inspections / reporting.
In addition to the services listed on the left ARP also offer the following services noted under.
- Measured Surveys, Plans Drawn, Lease Plans etc. (all building types)
- Schedules of Condition (all building types)
- Principal Designer Role (IMaPS Accredited) / CDM 2015 Advisory Role
- Health & Safety Advice (to Clients, Principal Designers, Principal Contractors, CDM 2015 Compliance)
- Health and Safety Inspections / Reporting
- Dilapidation's (Landlord or Tenant)
- Party Wall
- Building Pathology / Defects Analysis and Reporting
- DDA Inspections / Reporting
- Fire Risk Assessments
- Flood Surveys / Advice
The above list is not exhaustive so please contact us to discuss your particular requirements.
We note that sometimes as a prospective Client it is appreciated that you may not know exactly what service you require and that you may have simply been told ‘you need to get a surveyor’ and it can seem like a daunting process. We are happy to discuss this and develop the brief with you.