The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2016

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On 1 August 2016 the new Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2016 came into effect.

Whatever your role in construction, CDM 2016 aims to improve health and safety in the industry by helping you to:

  • sensibly plan the work so the risks involved are managed from start to finish
  • have the right people for the right job at the right time
  • cooperate and coordinate your work with others
  • have the right information about the risks and how they are being managed
  • communicate this information effectively to those who need to know
  • consult and engage with workers about the risks and how they are being managed

Virtually everyone involved in a construction project has legal duties under the new CDM 2016 - there is no exclusion for small projects or domestic projects.  

CDM 2016 for Northern Ireland - what has changed?

Types of projects and what they must have:

All projects

Projects where more than one contractor is involved (both domestic and non-domestic)

Projects where work is scheduled to last longer than 30 days and have more than 20 workers on site at any point in the project, or exceed 500 person days 

Workers must have the right skills, knowledge, training and experience.

Contractors must provide appropriate supervision, instruction and information and a written construction phase health and safety plan.

Workers must have the right skills, knowledge, training and experience.

Contractors must provide appropriate supervision, instruction and information and a written construction phase health and safety plan.

A principal designer and a principal contractor must be appointed.

There must be a health and safety file.

Workers must have the right skills, knowledge, training and experience.

Contractors must provide appropriate supervision, instruction and information and a written construction phase health and safety plan.

A principal designer and a principal contractor must be appointed.

There must be a health and safety file.

The client must notify HSENI of the project 

 

Transitional arrangements

For Northern Ireland most of the new regulations are the same as those introduced in GB in April 2015, but there is a difference in the transitional arrangements that duty holders need to be aware of.

CDM coordinator/principal designer

There will be a 12 month transitional period (compared to six months in GB). 

For projects involving more than one contractor which started before 1 August 2016 and where a CDM coordinator has not been appointed by 1 August 2016:

  • the client must appoint a principal designer as soon as practicable (if the construction phase has not yet begun) and
  • if the construction phase has started, they can appoint a principal designer if they wish, but they are not legally required to do so

Where on 1 August 2016 the client has appointed a CDM coordinator, a principal designer must be appointed before the end of the transition period (1 August 2017) unless the project comes to an end before then. 

The CDM coordinator must comply with certain duties (listed in the legislation) for the duration of their appointment.

Other transitional arrangements 

Pre-construction information, construction phase plans or health and safety files provided under CDM 2007 are recognised as meeting the equivalent standards in CDM 2016.

Any project notified under CDM 2007 is recognised as a notification under CDM 2016.

A principal contractor appointed under CDM 2007 will be considered to be a principal contractor under CDM 2016.

In all other circumstances the requirements of CDM 2016 apply in full from 1 August 2016.

Duty holders and CDM 2016

The changes from the Construction (Design & Management) Regulations 2007 will have implications for existing and new duty holders.

Duty holders are defined as follows:

  • commercial clients
  • domestic clients
  • principal designers
  • designers
  • principal contractors
  • contractors
  • workers

Commercial clients

Commercial clients are organisations or an individual for whom a construction project is carried out that is done as part of a business.

They must make suitable arrangements for managing a project, including:

  • other duty holders are appointed as appropriate
  • sufficient time and resources are allocated

They must also make sure:

  • relevant information is prepared and provided to other duty holders
  • the principal designer and principal contractor carry out their duties
  • welfare facilities are provided

Domestic clients

Domestic clients are people who have construction work carried out on their own home (or the home of a family member) that is not done as part of a business.

Though in scope of CDM 2016, their client duties are normally transferred to:

  • the contractor for single contractor projects
  • the principal contractor for projects with more than one contractor

However, the domestic client can instead choose to have a written agreement with the principal designer to carry out the client duties.

Remember

CDM 2016 applies if the work is carried out by someone else on the domestic client’s behalf.

If the householder carries out the work themselves, it is classed as DIY and CDM 2016 does not apply.

Designers

Designers are organisations or individuals who as part of a business, prepare or modify designs for a building, product or system relating to construction work.

When preparing or modifying designs, they need to eliminate, reduce or control foreseeable risks that may arise during:

  • construction
  • the maintenance and use of a building once it is built

They must also provide information to other members of the project team to help them fulfil their duties.

Principal designers

Principal designers are designers appointed by the client in projects involving more than one contractor. They can be an organisation or an individual with sufficient knowledge, experience and ability to carry out the role.

They must plan, manage, monitor and coordinate health and safety in the pre-construction phase of a project, including:

  • identifying, eliminating or controlling foreseeable risks
  • ensuring designers carry out their duties
  • preparing and providing relevant information to other duty holders
  • liaising with the principal contractor to help in the planning, management, monitoring and coordination of the construction phase

Principal contractors 

Principal contractors are contractors appointed by the client to coordinate the construction phase of a project where it involves more than one contractor.   

They must plan, manage, monitor and coordinate health and safety in the construction phase of a project, including:

  • liaising with the client and principal designer
  • preparing the construction phase plan
  • organising cooperation between contractors and coordinating their work

They need to make sure:

  • suitable site inductions are provided
  • reasonable steps are taken to prevent unauthorised access
  • workers are consulted and engaged in securing their health and safety
  • welfare facilities are provided

Find out more

Contractors

Contractors are those who carry out the actual construction work - they can be an individual or a company.

They must:

  • plan, manage and monitor construction work under their control so it is carried out without risks to health and safety

For projects involving more than one contractor, they must coordinate their activities with others in the project team.

In particular they must comply with directions given to them by the principal designer or principal contractor.

For single contractor projects, the must prepare a construction phase plan. 

Workers

Workers are those working for or under the control of contractors on a construction site. Workers must:

  • be consulted about matters which affect their health, safety and welfare
  • take care of their own health and safety, and of others who might be affected by their actions
  • report anything they see which is likely to endanger either their own or others’ health and safety
  • cooperate with their employer, fellow workers, contractors and other duty holders

Resources

CITB - questions and answers

The following CITB documents are question and answer (Q&A) briefs. These are not formal HSE guidance and are not intended to cover every aspect of the topic or be a ‘one size fits all’ answer, but provide consistent and helpful answers to some of the most common questions which have arisen about CDM 2015. 

More information