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What Are The CDM Regulations?

CDM is extremely relevant in the construction industry - so if you work in this industry, you’re likely familiar with the term.

The regulations should be applied throughout the construction process - and that means before, during, and even after the work has been completed.

But what exactly does CDM mean? And what are the regulations? Read on to learn more about the CDM regulations, including the construction phase plan.


What Does CDM Mean?

In the construction industry, CDM stands for Construction Design and Management Regulations. It’s a set of regulations designed to manage the health, safety, and welfare of construction projects.

The CDM regulations apply to all construction projects in Great Britain, as a way to ensure that all work is conducted safely and effectively. Regardless of the size, duration, or type of the project, the CDM applies and should be followed.

If you’re working on a small project, you’ll need to understand the CDM as much as somebody working on a large-scale construction project. Likewise, if you’re a sole trader, then the CDM will be as relevant to you as it is to somebody who works in a big corporation.

No matter your role on the project, the CDM will most likely apply to you. For example, if you’re a contractor, you’ll have to follow your contractor duties. If you’re a designer of a project, then you’ll need to follow the designer duties. Likewise, if you’re a client that’s having work carried out, then you’ll have client duties.

The CDM also applies to domestic projects - which means if you’re having work completed on your home, then you’ll need to consider the CDM. However, your duties won’t be the same as client duties on commercial projects. If you’re a builder on a domestic project, you may even have more contractor duties to follow.

The CDM may take some time to get to grips with as it covers a lot - read our next section to learn more about the actual regulations. 


The CDM Regulations Explained

The CDM regulations are a set of H&S (health and safety) regulations that are applied on all construction projects, regardless of the size, type of project, or duration.

They are applied during the project, ahead of projects, and for any future work to improve the health and safety of a construction project.

According to the CDM, each and every project should have a written construction phase plan. In this plan, you must disclose information about the project as well as emergency procedures and potential hazards. We’ve included more information on construction phase plans further down the page, so be sure to keep reading.

All workers on a project should have the relevant training, skills, knowledge, and experience. The CDM states that contractors should supply the right instructions and supervision to ensure the project is completed in a streamlined manner.

If there are multiple contractors on a project, there should also be appointed a principal contractor as well as a principal designer (where relevant). Health and safety files should also be completed to ensure all legislation is followed.

If the project is expected to last longer than 30 days with more than 20 workers working at the same time at any point, then it’s the client’s responsibility to notify HSE of the project.

In this post, we’ve only given you a brief summary of some of the most important regulations. If you want to gain a firmer understanding of the CDM regulations, then we recommend taking a course.

Click here for our own CDM Awareness course. It covers the key concepts of the regulations as well as information of the different roles and responsibilities in a construction project - as well as the main documents that should be produced. We also provide a variety of example projects that can give you some insight as to how the regulations are applied. Alternatively, you could click here for the rest of our quality health and safety courses


Construction Phase Plan

All projects should have a construction phase plan - it’s a document that needs to be completed following the CDM regulations.

Firstly, there should be a description of the project with information of all people working on the project - e.g, designers, clients, contractors, and the appointed principles.

Another component of the plan is the management of the work - e.g, site rules, emergency procedures, security, welfare, first aid, and management responsibilities and structure.

A construction phase plan should include arrangements for controlling risk - e.g, preventing falls, working with explosives, asbestos removal, manual handling, hazardous substances, and countless others. Click here to learn more about health and safety risks on construction sites.

Design and construction hazards should also be included in the plan, including handling design changes, information of identified risks, and coordination of design work.