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22nd May, 2017

CDM 2015 Principal Designer Responsibilities

The Principal Designer is an important duty holder under CDM 2015, and as such has a wide number of responsibilities throughout the project.

Appointing the Principal Designer early is crucial as they have a number of duties to perform before work starts on site.

In fact, CDM 2015 describes the Principal Designer as the designer is overall control of the pre-construction phase of the project, which means any preparation and planning up to work starting on site.

Principal Designers are responsible for health and safety during when planning, managing and monitoring the pre-construction phase of the project.

The Principal Designers responsibilities don't stop when work starts, but carry on through to project completion.

These responsibilities are set out as duties under CDM 2015, and include to:

  • Plan, manage, monitor the pre-construction phase, coordinate matters relating to health and safety, ensure that, so far as is reasonably practicable, the project is carried out without risks to health or safety.
  • Consider health and safety when design, technical and organisational aspects are being decided in order to plan the various items or stages of work which are to take place simultaneously or in succession.
  • Consider health and safety when estimating time required to complete work or stages.
  • Take into account the general principles of prevention and contents of any construction phase plan and health and safety file.
  • Identify and eliminate or control, so far as is reasonably practicable, foreseeable risks to the health or safety of any person affected by the construction work or in future use, maintenance or cleaning of the structure.
  • Ensure designers comply with their duties.
  • Ensure that all persons working in relation to the pre-construction phase cooperate with the client, principal designer and each other.
  • Assist the client in the provision of the pre-construction information.
  • Provide pre-construction information, promptly and in a convenient form, to every designer and contractor appointed, or being considered for appointment.
  • Liaise with the principal contractor and share information relevant to the planning, management and monitoring of the construction phase.
  • During the pre-construction phase, prepare a health and safety file, and ensure it is appropriately reviewed, updated and revised due to any changes that have occurred.
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This article was written by Emma at HASpod. Emma has over 10 years experience in health and safety and BSc (Hons) Construction Management. She is NEBOSH qualified and Tech IOSH.

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