If you wish, you can appoint someone else to carry out your duties as a client. The CDM regulations allow you to appoint an agent for this purpose. If you appoint an agent, you first have to ensure that they are competent to carry out your duties as a client. This may involve making enquiries about their previous track record, experience and management arrangements for carrying out these duties. If you have decided someone will act as your agent a written declaration has to be sent to HSE by either you or the agent. The declaration should:
Explain the agent is acting on your behalfInclude the name and address of the personMaking the declarationContain the exact address of the siteBe signed by or on behalf of your agent
What are the client and client’s agent duties under the CDM Regulations?
You have the following duties under the CDM Regulations, whether you are a client or client’s agent:
Appoint a planning supervisorProvide information on health and safety to the planning supervisor Appoint a principal contractorEnsure those you appoint are competent and adequately resourced to carry out their health and safety responsibilities Ensure that a suitable health and safety plan has been prepared by the principal contractor before construction work starts and ensure the health and safety file given to you at the end of the project is kept available for use.
Appointing a planning supervisor
You have to appoint a competent and adequately resourced planning supervisor. You should make this appointment as early as possible during the design and planning work for the project so that they can carry out their duties and advise you if necessary on the subsequent appointment of others. The planning supervisor has responsibility for coordinating the health and safety aspects of design and for ensuring the pre-tender stage health and safety plan is prepared. The planning supervisor is also responsible for ensuring the health and safety file is prepared.
Providing information to the planning supervisor
You have to provide the planning supervisor with any information you possess that is relevant to health and safety of the project. This could be information about the site, the premises, work processes or activities where the construction work is to be carried out. You may have the information to hand (eg existing drawings) or you might have to arrange for surveys of the site or premises to obtain the relevant information (eg determining the location and presence of asbestos). It might also involve obtaining information from utility companies on the location of services.
Appointing a principal contractor
Before construction work starts, you have to appoint a competent and adequately resourced principal contractor to carry out or manage the health and safety aspects of the work. In most cases this will be the contractor who will be in charge of the construction work (eg the main, design and build or management contractor). You could ask prospective principal contractors how they intend to deal with the health and safety issues highlighted by the planning supervisor in the pre-tender stage health and safety plan.
This will help you determine whether the prospective principal contractor is competent and adequately resourced. Enquiries about their previous track record, experience, general arrangements for managing health and safety and references will also help in assessing competence. You can also ask the planning supervisor to advise you on the issues of competence and resources for health and safety. They have to do this if you request it.
Making arrangements for designers or other contractors to carry out work
If you arrange for a designer to prepare a design or for a contractor to carry out construction work, you have to be reasonably satisfied they are competent and are adequately resourced to carry out their health and safety responsibilities. This means that where you arrange for a designer to be novated to a contractor, when you nominate a preferred contractor or arrange for any designer or contractor to undertake work, you also have to be reasonably satisfied of their competence and resources.
Ensuring a suitable health and safety plan has been prepared before construction work begins
Before construction work starts you have to ensure so far as is reasonably practicable that the principal plan. You can ask your planning supervisor to advise you on whether the plan is suitable. They have to do this if you request it. You are only expected to make a decision on whether the health and safety plan is suitable from the information that is available at the start of the construction phase.
Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 1994: The role of the planning supervisor
What are the planning supervisor’s duties under the CDM Regulations?
You have the following duties under the CDM Regulations:Ensure HSE is notified of the project.Ensure co-operation between designers.Ensure designers comply with their duties.Ensure a pre-tender stage health and safety plan is prepared. Advise the client when requested to do so.Ensure a health and safety file is prepared.
Notification of project to HSE
You have to make sure that the HSE office local to where the construction work is to take place is notified of the project if the construction work in it will last for 30 days or more or involve more than 500 person days. HSE Form 10 (rev), which can be obtained free from any local HSE office, can be used when making the notification.
Ensuring co-operation between designers
You have to take reasonable steps to ensure cooperation between designers. This is so that the health and safety aspects of design are properly considered and co-ordinated, particularly where the work of different designers overlaps.
To achieve this it may involve you in: ensuring relevant information (eg, drawings) flows freely between the different designers – this includes temporary works designers; ensuring designers take proper account of health and safety in their design; ensuring designers co-ordinate their work to see how the different aspects of design interact with each other and affect health and safety. You will probably need to contact designers to make sure this happens. Any conflict, which could affect health and safety, will need to be resolved.
Ensuring designers comply with their duties
You have to ensure so far as reasonably practicable that designers comply with their duties. Depending on the nature and extent of the design work you may need to carry out some form of review of designers’ procedures to see how they have analysed and assessed health and safety risks and tried to eliminate them. You will also need to check whether adequate information about aspects of their design that might affect the health and safety is included. This will probably mean looking at documented procedures on larger projects. On small projects a simple face to face questioning may be sufficient.
Preparing the pre-tender stage health and safety plan
Before arrangements are made for a principal contractor to be appointed to carry out or manage the construction work, you have to ensure that a pre-tender stage health and safety plan is prepared. This will need to be available for the tendering process, which selects a principal contractor for the construction work. The pre-tender stage health and safety plan serves two main purposes:
it passes information on health and safety to prospective principal contractors so that they can prepare an outline submission to it during tendering it allows the client (taking the advice of the planning supervisor or other advisers where appropriate) to assess the tender submissions of prospective principal contractors
For these reasons it is important to include the pretender stage health and safety plan in tender documents so that it requires specific answers to questions. There is little to be gained from merely outlining hazards or risks what is wanted is detail on how the contractor will deal with them.
Advise the client
If the client requests, you have to give adequate advice on:
the competence of any designer who the client is arranging to prepare a design and whether they are adequately resourced to carry out their health and safety responsibilities;
the competence of any contractor (including the principal contractor) who the client arranges to carry out or manage construction work and whether they are adequately resourced to carry out their health and safety responsibilities
Prepare the health and safety file
The health and safety file is a record of information for the client (andothers who might be responsible for the structure in the future) of the key health and safety risks that have to be managed during any subsequent maintenance, repair, or construction work.
Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 1994: The role of the designer
Who are designers?
Designers are organisations or individuals who carry out design work for a construction project, including temporary works design. Designers may include architects, consulting engineers, quantity surveyors, chartered surveyors, technicians, specifiers, principal contractors and specialist contractors. The term ‘design’ is a wide term under the CDM Regulations and includes drawings, design details, specifications and bills of quantity.
The designer’s role in health and safety throughout the project
You play a key role within the construction project in ensuring that the health and safety of those who are to construct, maintain or repair a structure are considered during the design process. If you don’t do this it could delay the project, make it much more difficult for contractors to devise safe systems of work and cause the client to make costly changes so that the structure can be maintained safely.
What are the designer’s duties under the CDM Regulations?
You have the following duties in relation to health and safety under the CDM Regulations:
make clients aware of their duties;give due regard to health and safety in your design work;provide adequate information about the health and safety risk of the design to those who need it; co-operate with the planning supervisor and, where appropriate other designers involved in the project.
Give due regard to health and safety in your design workWhen you carry out your design work you have to consider the potential effect of your design on the health and safety of those carrying out the construction work and others affected by the work. To do this you will need to assess the risks of your design which can reasonably be foreseen. Usually this will include risks to those building, maintaining or repairing the structure as well as those who might be affected by this work (eg members of the public).
Make clients aware of their duties
You should not start preparing any design work until the client is aware of their duties under the CDM Regulations. You have a legal duty to explain to the client their responsibilities under the Regulations. Where appropriate, you could advise the client to seek professional advice for help in complying with their duties.
Providing information on health and safety
When you have carried out your design work and concluded that there are risks which it is not reasonably practicable to avoid, information needs to be given about risks which remain. This information needs to be included with the design to alert others to the risks which they cannot reasonably be expected to know. This is essential for the parties who have to use the design information. For example, the planning supervisor who has to ensure the pre-tender stage health and safety plan and the health safety file are prepared, the principal contractor and other contractors who use the design information and the actual individuals carrying out the work.