Ethentic Ethentic Higher Safety Higher Safety Chipmunk Data Chipmunk Data
  • Higher Safety Higher Safety Chipmunk Data Chipmunk Data Ethentic Ethentic

    CDM REGULATIONS 2015: DESIGNING IN THE DARK?

    HSE criticised over lack of designer guidance on risk avoidance

    The Safety and Health Practitioner journal (SHP) has published an article by John Carpenter (Consultant) which argues there is a lack of clarity regarding the legal requirement placed on design organisations under CDM 2015. He states:

    “without the control and sign-posting necessary for goal-setting legislation to work effectively the regulation is unworkable. The formal guidance fails to tackle this and recent advice from HSE adds further confusion.

    There is no clarity, even after 20 years of CDM, for the construction designer. This has been significantly influenced by HSE’s historical stance of denying that a problem exists, but declining to discuss it in any meaningful manner.”

    Carpenter believes that:

    “The new HSE Legal Guidance (L153) does little to help the designer understand the process of eliminating risk or, where not reasonably practicable, to try to reduce it.

    Indeed, two examples quoted, that of moving plant off the roof to ground level (para 86a) and reducing the size of paving flags (para 87a), point designers in a direction and then abandon them, providing no explanation as to how, within the context of real project pressures, the legal requirement is achieved with confidence. “

    Suggested way forward

    The article proposes that the way forward is to: (a) identify sectors e.g. domestic basements, new housing, refurbishment, known to be of legitimate concern to HSE and others; and (b) consult users (clients and others), principal designers and constructors order to determine any key concerns.

    Guidance can then be written to illustrate the necessary actions that are to be taken by those involved in design. Two examples have been written and published on the ICE website. John Carpenter concludes that:

    “It is a legitimate comment, after some 20 years, to argue that with authority comes responsibility: a responsibility to provide clarity for the ‘rule of law’. Industry has offered to assist and has started the process by producing the two guidance sheets cited above. These do not solve the underlying problem but are a pragmatic and directly applicable step forward. Industry needs to speak. HSE needs to act.”

    Comment

    Concerns over ‘uncertainty’ created by goal setting legal duties started with the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and the qualification “so far as is reasonably practicable”. See our posts and comments on CDM Designer Duties.

    The old adage…. “Be careful what you wish for” is relevant here.

    The benefit of uncertainty is flexibility for the duty holder which allows design decisions to be based on the facts in each situation. By contrast, greater certainty and specification comes with less flexibility and removes the ability of designers to tailor decisions in each case. You pays your money….

    In addition, uncertainty makes it more difficult for the regulator to prove that an offence has been committed. The regulator might question the substance of what is done to comply, however, the best ‘defence’ for design organisations is to establish a risk avoidance process which is practical, followed by staff and monitored.

    CDM 2015 Information and Templates

    See CDM 2015 Survey Results for the findings of our CDM 2015 Five Minute Online Survey.

    We have published a great deal of further information and templates designed to support Clients, Designers, Principal Designers/Contractors and Contractors in meeting their duties under CDM Regulations 2015

    Latest Construction Health and Safety News

    HSE ENFORCEMENT DATABASE UPDATE 17th APRIL 2019

    hselogo1Latest online register of prosecutions and enforcement notices

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 17th April 2019

    TWO BRICKLAYERS INJURED IN FLOOR COLLAPSE

    Joist hangers incorrectly installed and floor overloaded with blocks

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 16th April 2019

    FIRM FINED £150K AFTER BOY FELL FROM SCAFFOLD

    Ladder guard failed to prevent 12-year old accessing scaffolding

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 16th April 2019

    SAFETYCAM VEHICLE TRAPS ERRANT DRIVERS

    Safer Highways reports on new approaches to roadworks health and safety

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 16th April 2019

    NEW PRE-QUAL SYSTEM LAUNCHED BY MAJOR PLAYERS

    Build UK and CECA publish common PQ assessment standard

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 16th April 2019

    REPORT CONFIRMS RISING COST OF OFFENDING

    Considerable increases in fines imposed on larger organisations

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 16th April 2019

    CONCRETE BLOCK MAKER FAILED TO GUARD MACHINE

    Effective safety precautions absent for a number of years

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 9th April 2019

    HOTEL REFURBISHMENT DISTURBED ASBESTOS

    Firm failed to act on well-founded asbestos concerns expressed by employee

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 1st April 2019

    CABLE HIT CAUSED BY LACK OF PLANS AND DETECTION

    Excavation for sign erection struck live electrical cable

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 1st April 2019

    HSE AND THE ‘SECRETS’ OF RISK ASSESSMENT

    hselogo1Regulator advice on successful risk assessment comes at a price

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 1st April 2019

    WORKMAN FELL INTO CAR PARK VENTILATION SHAFT

    Protective grill unsecured and gave way under movement of workman

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 1st April 2019

    BUILDER GIVEN PRISON TERM OVER WORK AT HEIGHT

    Unsafe working platforms and lack of silica dust control punished severely

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 1st April 2019

    HSE WARNING ON SAFE DEMO AND REFURBISHMENT

    TV programme prompts stability guidance for demo & refurb project teams

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 1st April 2019

    VIBRATION RISK UNCONTROLLED FOR TEN YEARS

    Company workers used sanders and air-fed cutting equipment

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 26th March 2019

    BUILDING OCCUPIER FINED £1.8M OVER ROOF FALL

    Two workmen fell 4m through rooflight during leak investigation

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 26th March 2019

    CONSTRUCTION SITE DEATHS SET TO FALL?

    HSE in-year fatality records for 2018/19 suggest significant reduction

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 22nd March 2019

    BRICKLAYER FATALLY INJURED BY FALLING WALL

    Masonry collapsed during concrete back filling operation

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 18th March 2019

    BASIC LADDER SAFETY FAILURES FINED £150,000

    Repair and maintenance firm had no excuse for errors causing injury

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 18th March 2019

    HSE ISSUES REMINDER ON SAFE SCAFFOLD DESIGN

    Recent incidents and high winds prompt warning from regulator

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 12th March 2019

    LORRY DRIVER DIED IN OVERHEAD POWER STRIKE

    Major company failed to communicate precautions to grab arm operator

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 12th March 2019

    ASSESSMENT SHOWED RISK – PRECAUTIONS NOT TAKEN

    Workman seriously injured when falling into open unguarded stairwell

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 1st March 2019

    MAJOR FIRM FAILED TO IMPLEMENT SAFE SYSTEM

    Procedures for safe plant refuelling failed to prevent death of workman

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 26th February 2019

    CLIENT PROSECUTED OVER CONTRACTOR FATAL FALL

    Company breached duty to protect contractors as well as employees

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 26th February 2019

    FOURTEEN YEAR FAILURE TO MANAGE ASBESTOS

    Firm failed to implement asbestos management plan following survey

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 25th February 2019

    CHILD INJURED BY WALL COLLAPSE INCIDENT

    Council failed to carry out “intelligence led” condition inspections

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 18th February 2019
    Ethentic Ethentic Higher Safety Higher Safety Chipmunk Data Chipmunk Data
  • Higher Safety Higher Safety Chipmunk Data Chipmunk Data Ethentic Ethentic