Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 1994: The role of the client
Using an agent
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 behalf
Include the name and address of the person
Making the declaration
Contain the exact address of the site
Be 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 supervisor
Provide information on health and safety to the planning supervisor Appoint a principal contractor
Ensure 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...
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