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A Study of the Implementation and Impact of CDM 2007 Regulations

Construction, Design and Management (CDM) 2007 Regulations came into force on April 2007, and applies to building, civil engineering and engineering construction work. The new regulations have been based on a combination of Construction Regulations 1996 and CDM 1994. The Regulations require site notification to HSE when the construction work is expected to last longer than 30 days; or when more than 500 person days of construction work is involved. Using form F 10, HSE should be notified in writing before starting construction work. Duty-holders include clients, CDM co-ordinators, designers, principal contractors, contractors, and workers. The Regulations have been aimed at improving management and co-ordination of health and safety efforts in response to the large number of fatal accidents and ill health within the construction industry. There has been an emphasis on planning and management. Duties have been placed on clients, designers and contractors with greater responsibilities for the CDM co-ordinator. Important changes include: new duty on designers to eliminate hazards and reduce risks, and compliance with Workplace Regulations 1992; clients inability to appoint an agent for their legal duties and criminal liabilities, making the CDM co-ordinator role more advisory; principal contractors need to indicate the time for preparation for on-site work to appointed contractors; contractors responsibility for similar duty towards those appointed in addition to planning and managing their own work; and the CDM project co-ordinator replacing the role of planning supervisor (HSE, 2007; PROJEN, 2009).

A survey was conducted by CDM2007, an award winning digital training organisation, to determine the effectiveness of implementation of Regulations, and impact of CDM 2007 Regulations. 228 duty-holders participated in the survey. Over 54% respondents felt that their management colleagues at all levels of the organisation understood their responsibilities, and 47% doubted whether their colleagues were competent to carry out CDM Regulations. 53% specialist health and safety professionals lacked confidence in fellow managers having CDM confidence. 59% respondents felt positive recognition and priority being given to CDM Regulations by their management. 75% respondents reported setting clear policies for implementation of CDM Regulations, and 74% reported having well defined responsibilities. 62% respondents were getting support and resources they needed to carry out their CDM duties and 67% receiving support felt greater confidence in the competence of duty-holder colleagues. It has been concluded that there was a significant gap between employers implementing clear chains of responsibility, implementation policies, positive culture, and appropriate support; and those not doing well enough (Kirby & Pudney,  2009).

Management of construction projects were cognizant of CDM 2007 Regulations, and the majority have set policies for implementation and responsibilities for duty-holders. As CDM 2007 has changes in responsibilities from CDM 1994, duty-holders need to be assessed for competencies and trained for deficiencies as necessary. 

Alternative Methodology
A survey has been considered for the study, and the study would be carried out in several stages. Initially relevant literature would be reviewed to gain an understanding of CDM 2007 Regulations and requirements of stakeholders. The next stage would involve a review of cases published to determine the impact of CDM 2007 Regulations, limitations and challenges faced by duty-holders. A survey tool in the form of questionnaire would be developed, participants enrolled, and the survey conducted. Construction projects that have been recently completed or currently in progress would be enrolled in the study. At least 30 companies are expected to participate in the survey. The results would be analysed and the findings would be summarised and presented. The resources available at the library and computer laboratories have been considered adequate for the study.

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