Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015

The updated regulations came into health and safety law on the 6th April 2015.

In general there are to be three phases of a project.

  • Pre-Construction: Inception. Design and Planning.
  • Construction:The Construction Work, Design and Planning may continue.
  • Post Construction: Practical completion of the work and handover.

Construction works has many labels and there are no changes. Construction works will continue to include demolition and refurbishment.

Duty holders under ‘Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015’.

  • The Client: Any person for who construction project is completed. Commercial Client, construction work is in connection with business. Domestic Client, construction work is not completed in connection with business.
  • Designer: Any person who as part of their business, prepares or modifies a design. Arranges for / instructs a person under their control to prepare a design.
  • Contractor: Any person, who as part of their business carries out, manages or controls construction works.

If a project has, or is likely to have more than one contractor a client needs to appoint ‘in writing’.

  • Principal Designer: the Principal Designer (PD) who plans, manages, monitors and co-ordinates the pre-construction phase of the project.
  • Principal Contractor: The Principal Contractor (PC) who plans, manages, monitors and co-ordinates the construction phase of the project.

The difference from ‘Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007’ to ‘Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015’.

  • Construction phase health and safety plan required for all projects.
  • New role introduced – Principal Designer (PD).
  • Principals required if more than one contractor.
  • Changes to notifications of projects F10.
  • No detailed guidance related to competence.
  • The role of the CDM co-ordinator removed.


Clients are key players; their duties are similar to ‘Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007’.

Appoint duty holders. If a client does not appoint a Principal Designer or Principal Contractor in writing they (the client) must fulfil the duties themselves.

Make suitable arrangements for managing the project. 

Provide pre-construction information. 

Ensure that welfare facilities are provided. 

Take reasonable steps to make sure the Principal Designer and Principal Contractor carry out their duties.

They can seek assistance from a competent person, (view the end of this general update). Accountability rests with the client.

There is more emphasis on the need to ensure that PD and PC carry out their duties.
‘Client Brief’ has been included as a straightforward way to assist clients setting out their expectations.

Adequate Arrangements.

Assemble the project team – designers and contractors. Appoint as early as practicable.

Ensure roles and responsibilities are clearly defined such as design responsibilities of contractors. 

Allocate sufficient time and resources.

Ensure there are effective arrangements for team communication, co-operation and co-ordination. 

Ensure that other duty holders are carrying out certain duties.

Ensure others carry out their duties.

That a Construction Phase Health and Safety Plan (CPHSP) be prepared before the Construction starts The CPHSP is required for all construction projects. 
Work can be carried out so far as is reasonably practicable without risk to H&S 

A Principal Designer prepares a Health and Safety File (this is towards the end of a project). Health and Safety files are needed on projects when more than one contractor 

The Principals’ comply with their duties to manage, monitor etc. their phase of the project such as through progress or project meetings
’On larger projects, client may value an independent review of standards’ (this may be someone like a Chartered Safety & Health Practitioner, view the end of this general update))

Ensure the Principal Contractor consults and engages with the site team and operatives and where appropriate the designers.

If clients need help and assistance in making any such arrangements, they could use the services of the persons who provide competent advice under the ‘Management of Health and Safety of Work Regulations’ such as someone who appears on the OSHCR (Occupational Safety & Health Consultants Register). View the end of this general update.

Third Party Project Managers.

Project managers, contract administrators, clients agents etc. may help a client fulfil some of their duties (e.g. 
advising on appointments), they are
not a duty holder under ‘Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015’.


The online system of reporting projects will remain. The project is notifiable if it is, longer than 30 days and more than 20 workers on site at any point or over 500 person days. The client can request someone to notify on their behalf. The client must ensure that an up to date copy of the F10 notice is displayed in the construction site office.


The client should check these are in place from the very start of the project. They could agree that existing services are available, complete a site inspection or asking the Principal Contractor what is provided or available

Domestic Clients.

Domestic client’s duties fall onto either Contractor (if only one contractor on site) or
Principal Contractor (if more than one contractor on site). 

Can have a written agreement to transfer duties to Principal Designer. 

If a domestic client does not appoint a Principal Contractor and Principal Designer then by default: – a designer becomes the Principal Designer
a contractor becomes the Principal Contractor.

Pre-Construction Information (PCI).

Information in the clients’ possession or which is reasonable to obtain, such as a survey, that allows designers (including PD) or contractors (including PC) to fulfil their duties. An outline is to be provided – this is by default a client issue, often it is likely to be issued by the Principal Designer.

This would include information about the intended project, the clients’ brief, key dates, information on health and safety hazards, including design and construction hazards and how they could be addressed. Planning and management of the project. Health and Safety file information, possible from previous projects. What could be included at the end of the project. This should be relevant to the project, have appropriate level of detail and proportionate to the risks involved.

Access to the site
Construction vehicles, members of the public. 
Site boundaries or areas. Site security. Restrictions 
such as hours of work, environmental restrictions (e.g. tree protection orders). Proximity of schools, hospital. Key project dates. Construction sequences.

Significant and Unusual Risks.

Designers should share information about elements of 
the design that present significant risks. Information about unusual or complex risks that may be missed or misunderstood. They should not focus on well-known and well-understood hazards.


Although it has been taken out of the regulations, there is still likely to be a some form of checks, the use of SSIP organisations ‘Safety Schemes in Procurement’ – Is a cross recognition scheme.

The term ‘competence’ to be replaced with ‘by skills, knowledge, experience and organisational capability’, the current detailed guidance to be removed.

Appointing Designers (Including PD) and Contractors (Including PC).

Take reasonable steps to satisfy that designers or contractors appointed have the ‘skills, knowledge and experience and, if they are an organisation, the organisational capability’ necessary to carry out their work in a way which secures health and safety. 
Do not accept roles for which there is a lack necessary skills, knowledge, experience and organisational capability. The approach should be proportionate. Many designers (including PD) have track record of CPD such as ‘RICS’, RIBA’ and ‘CIOB’.

HSE guidance suggests that designers or contractors could assess themselves and supply evidence in line with PAS 91 – Construction related procurements pre-qualification questionnaires.

Individual Construction Workers Competence.

‘When you employ or control people doing work for you, you must make sure that: They have the necessary skills, knowledge, training and experience to do the job safely and without putting their own or others’ health and safety at risk’. Reference to Industry Certification Cards (CSCS etc.): – they should not be relied upon. Nationally recognised qualifications (e.g. NVQs etc.) are considered to provide assurance of workers’ abilities.

Principal Designers (PD) and Designers.

A designer has control over the pre-construction phase as a principal designer (PD). Appointment to be made as soon as is practicable, in any event before the construction phase begins. If the client fails to appoint then the client takes the duty role of the PD.

The PD must plan, manage and monitor the pre construction phase and coordinate (PMM&C) matters relating to health and safety during the pre-construction phase. To ensure that, so far as is reasonably practicable, the project is carried out without risks to health and safety. The pre-construction phase – ‘any period of time during which design or preparatory work is carried out for a project and may continue during the construction phase’.

The PD must take into account, the general principles of prevention (regulation 4 of the ‘Management of Health and Safety of Work Regulations’). The content of any construction phase plan (where relevant) and the content of any health and safety file (where relevant).

The PD ‘To ‘PMM&C’ the PD must identify and eliminate or control foreseeable risks to. Construction workers and those they could affect; 
those maintaining or cleaning a structure or those using a structure as a workplace. To coordinate health and safety matters, the PD must ensure that (in the pre construction phase) all persons co-operate with the Client, PD and each other.

(When within the PD’s control) provide PCI to every designer or contractor appointed (or being considered for appointment). When in place as the PD, liaise with the Principal Contractor share with the PC information relevant to ‘PMM&C’ during the construction phase.

in the pre-construction phase, the exclusive duty to ‘co-ordinate’ the design is with the PD. Designers and Contractors and the Principal Contractor (PC) has no ‘co-ordination’ responsibility. Construction phase responsibility towards construction work rests with the PC.

Health and Safety File (HSF).

Prepare the health and safety file in the pre-construction phase that is ‘appropriate to the characteristics of the project’. Ensure that the HSF is ‘appropriately reviewed, updated and revised from time to time’, to take account of the work and changes. During the project the PC has to provide the PD with HSF information. If PD’s appointment ends before the PC’s pass the HSF to the PC. PC then responsible for update (etc.)
Last duty holder ‘standing’ passes HSF to Client (PD or PC).

The Contractor (including PC).

General site-based technical duties as ‘Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007′. 
’PM&M’ work and workers under their control. When more than one contractor must comply with any directions given by the PD or PC (no express duty on PD). If the only contractor respond to general principles of prevention. Draw up a construction phase plan or make arrangement for one to be created. 

The same role as Principal Contractor. Mirrored responsibilities (as PD) in adopting the general principles of 
prevention for design, technical and organisational aspects. Must ensure a suitable site induction is provided. 





Friday, July 3rd, 2015 services