19th September, 2017
CDM stands for the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations, and this set of regulations apply to all construction projects.
But what about maintenance work?
Yes, it is carried out by tradesmen, or sometimes by a handyman or caretaker. Maintenance work could be very short duration, and could result in little to no changes to the building or its services, just simply maintaining what is already there.
Does CDM apply here?
Well, yes, CDM does apply to maintenance work.
Maintenance and repair fall clearly under the definition of construction work under CDM 2015.
(a) the construction, alteration, conversion, fitting out, commissioning, renovation, repair, upkeep, redecoration or other maintenance (including cleaning which involves the use of water or an abrasive at high pressure, or the use of corrosive or toxic substances), de-commissioning, demolition or dismantling of a structure;
How does CDM apply to maintenance work?
Well, there are no special exemptions for short duration or maintenance work, so the regulations apply in full.
Of course, compliance with the regulations should be proportionate, so you would not need as extensive a Construction Phase Plan for a small maintenance job, and the site set up might be more flexible, using existing welfare facilities for example.
You still need to make sure you have all the necessary duties discharged before you start the work. Don’t forget, just because a project is small, does not mean the risks are less.
The pre-construction information is just as important, is there asbestos present, are there any hidden live services to be aware of, are there any fragile materials?
Where maintenance work is carried out for a domestic client, some client responsibilities are passed on to the contractor, so be aware if you have some extra duties to consider.