MEL Health and Safety Consultants

Construction Phase Plans

Construction Phase Plans

The way in which the construction phase will be managed and the key health and safety issues for the particular project must be set out in writing in the construction phase plan. This plan should set out the organisation and arrangements that have been put in place to manage risk and co-ordinate the work on site. It should not be a repository for detailed generic risk assessments, records of how decisions were reached or detailed method statements, but it may, for example set out when such documents will need to be prepared. It should be well focused, clear and easy for contractors and others to understand - emphasising key points and avoiding irrelevant material. It is crucial that all relevant parties are involved and co-operate in the development and implementation of the plan as work progresses.

The plan must be tailored to the particular project. Generic plans that do not contain the information relevant to the particular risks associated with the work will not satisfy the requirements of CDM. Photographs and sketches can greatly simplify and shorten explanations. It should also be organised so that relevant sections can easily be made available to designers and contractors.

Often the design and preparation for later work is not complete at the start of the construction phase. Nevertheless, the plan for the initial phase of the construction work must be prepared before any work begins. It should also address later activities that will require careful planning. It may only be practical to address such activities in outline form before work starts and most will require revision in the light of developments.

A plan is no use if it is treated as merely a paper exercise and gathers dust. To improve standards, it must be a practical aid to the management of health and safety on site. Principal contractors and other contractors have a particular role in both implementing and monitoring the plan to ensure that it works in practice. Monitoring arrangements will need to be discussed and agreed with the client as they form part of the management arrangements.
The plan needs to be routinely reviewed, revised and refined by the principal contractor as the project develops. For example, where the plan is not being followed, and health and safety is put at risk, those involved must take appropriate action to deal with the risk. Monitoring may show the plan has shortcomings and needs to be modified. Any significant changes in the plan should be brought to the attention of all those affected.

M.E.L. are greatly experienced in producing plans that contain the right information and are easy to use and maintain. If you require any assistance in formulating or implementing your construction phase plan, please do not hesitate to contact us.

CDM doesn't have to be difficult; we can help you make it simple.