The new CDM Regulations came into force on 6 April 2015. With effect from this date, the CDM Regulations 2007 are being repealed and will no longer apply. The key changes made to CDM 2015 are listed below.
Structural simplification of the regulations
The HSE proposes to simplify the structure of the Regulations to make them clearer and easier to understand. This is largely aimed at small to medium projects which tend to use SME (small and medium size enterprises); it is claimed that SME’s generally find the current Regulations difficult to understand and follow.
CDM co-ordinator role replaced by a ‘Principal Designer’
ü The most significant change in CDM 2015 is that the role of the ‘CDM co-ordinator’ has been abolished. Instead, clients must appoint a ‘Principal Designer’ on any project involving more than one contractor; the Principal Designer must be the designer with control over the pre-construction phase of the project. So, any designers appointed should not carry out any work beyond initial design unless the Principal Designer has confirmed that the Client is aware of their duties.
ü The Principal Designer (and the ‘Principal Contractor’) must be appointed by the Client, in writing, otherwise, by default, they are deemed to be carrying out these roles.
ü The Principal Designer must have the skills, knowledge, experience and capabilities to fulfil the role in a manner that maintains the health and safety of any person affected by the job.
ü If there is more than one contractor on site, the Client must appoint a Principal Designer and a Principal Contractor. The role is one of co-ordination, ensuring that the design takes into account all safety aspects from construction through to use, maintenance and cleaning.
Duties to be applicable to Domestic Projects
Compliance with CDM is now relevant on small domestic extension and refurbishment projects which were previously exempt. Under regulation 7, the role of the client on domestic projects is to be fulfilled by the contractor, the principal contractor or the principal designer. This aims to minimise the burden on Domestic Clients who cannot reasonably be expected to carry out CDM responsibilities.
Construction Phase Plan always required
A construction plan is always required under CDM 2015. The construction phase plan must be drawn up by the contractor, where a project involves only one contractor and therefore no principal contractor has been appointed.
For live projects, there will be a transition period running from 6 April 2015 to 6 October 2015. On projects where a CDM co-ordinator has already been appointed, the current role will remain unchanged for 6 months or to the end of the project, whichever is earlier. After this initial 6 month period, duties will change to meet the new regulations and clients will be required to appoint a principle designer (in writing) – if not, the duties fall upon the client by default.
Threshold for Notification
The requirements for notification have also changed to reduce the number of notifiable projects. Under regulation 6 of the CDM, a project is notifiable if the construction work on site is scheduled to; last longer than 30 working days and have more than 20 people working simultaneously at any point during the project; or exceed 500 persons per day. The Client is responsible for notifying the HSE of a project.
Replacement of the Approved Code of Practice (ACoP)
A new, shorter sign-posting ACoP complemented by the HSE and joint HSE-industry guidance.
‘Explicit competence’ requirements removed
The client will need to ensure duty holders can demonstrate appropriate information, instruction, training and supervision.