CDM2014 (?) to replace CDM2007

An update for CIRIA members - December 2012 


Many of you will be aware that the Health and Safety Executive will again be amending the CDM Regulations, driven by the current Government's wish for reductions in 'elf and safety' red tape and perceived gold-plating of the UK’s response to European directives.
The current activity is in response to recent Government reports, taking account of a recent review of how CDM is working and going back to the original European directive.
The activity involves the drafting of new legislation and guidance, public consultation, finalisation and implementation - which is intended to be in 2014....

Planned future CIRIA activity

CIRIA (through its membership of the CIC's Health and Safety Committee) will keep an eye on events and will try to ensure that members are kept informed of developments and given the opportunity to comment on what is proposed, when that becomes known. 

Further information

The following information is based upon a paper presented to the HSE’s Construction Industry Advisory Committee’ (CONIAC).
1.         HSE completed its evaluation of CDM 2007 in May 2011. Further consideration of future work on the Regulations and Approved Code of Practice (ACoP) was delayed following the announcement of the Löfstedt Review of Health and Safety Legislation and the subsequent Red Tape Challenge initiative. The HSE Board has agreed that work to simply and rationalise the CDM 2007 Regulatory package should now be undertaken. This is to be based on the Temporary or Mobile Construction Sites Directive (TMCSD).
2.         In March 2011 the Employment Minister announced an independent review of health and safety legislation. Professor Ragnar Löfstedt, who led this work, published his report at the end of November 2011. The Government accepted his recommendations, and a substantial amount of work is currently underway by HSE to deliver them.
3.         In April 2011 the Cabinet Office ‘Red Tape Challenge’ (RTC) initiative was launched as a mechanism by which members of the public could comment on (and argue for the removal of) legislation. Health and safety at work was identified as one of six cross-cutting themes for the two year period of the initiative. It was also the subject of a ‘spotlight’ period of two weeks in July 2011 during which over 80 comments were made on CDM 2007. The evaluation concluded that whilst CDM 2007 had delivered improvements over CDM 1994, concerns remained in a number of areas. The regulations are still believed to encourage a bureaucratic approach by many duty-holders, the approach to competence assessment (including individual competence) is problematic, and health and safety co-ordination is often not effective.
4.         Smaller  sites  continue  to  be  a  particularly  poorly  performing  sector  of  the construction  industry,  and  they  are  disproportionately  represented  in  the serious and fatal accident profile of the industry. The challenge of providing an effective regulatory framework for smaller construction sites remains substantial and CDM 2007 is not perceived as delivering change in this regard.
5.         Since the evaluation of CDM 2007 started, a number of considerations have emerged which suggest that, if change is carried out to CDM 2007, it should be more fundamental than those suggested by the evaluation report itself.
6.         CDM 2007 goes beyond the TMCSD in a number of ways. The most significant of these is the area of competence, where the evaluation has shown that industry response to the requirements is frequently disproportionate and adds minimal value to health and safety.
7.         Any revision to CDM would need to satisfy the requirements of the European Commission to fully implement Directives. In this regard, CDM 2007 under-implements TMCSD in that it does not impose duties on owner occupiers - so called ‘domestic clients’ (in most situations) by excluding them from the definition of ‘client’.
8.         The larger, more structured part of the industry has made significant progress in improving health and safety over the last 10 years. Increasingly, the motivation for achieving high standards of health and safety is through best practice and continuous improvement, rather than by regulation.  A two tier industry has emerged and the challenge of providing an effective regulatory framework for smaller construction sites remains substantial. To make a real impact on small sites the regulatory package needs to be simpler and more accessible. The evidence indicates CDM 2007 is poorly understood and applied on the smallest construction sites, with accordingly inappropriate or low compliance rates.
9.         Revisions should avoid a reduction in standards, retain those aspects that add value or enhance them, particularly in regulating smaller projects.