Link-up Suppliers & CDM2015

When preparing for an audit you will have to identify applicable statutory legislation which applies to the activities which your organisation undertakes and verify compliance. One piece of statutory regulations is the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM).

To identify and answer this firstly you will need to identify your own work activities and what it is you will be doing for the rail industry. This will need to include and identify what structure you will be working on/with (if any) and what the statutory regulations define as a structure. Secondly and if your work activities do meet the criteria of the statutory regulations you will need to identify what role(s) you undertake. In all instances the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 must be referred to.

Once you have identified what your work activities are and what you will be doing you will need to consider what is defined as applicable to the statutory regulations. Regulation 2 identifies the following:

“construction site”

includes any place where construction work is being carried out
or to which the workers have access, but does not include a workplace within the
site which is set aside for purposes other than construction work;

“construction work”

means the carrying out of any building, civil engineering or engineering construction work and includes—
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;
(b) the preparation for an intended structure, including site clearance,
exploration, investigation (but not site survey) and excavation (but not
pre-construction archaeological investigations), and the clearance or
preparation of the site or structure for use or occupation at its
(c) the assembly on site of prefabricated elements to form a structure or the
disassembly on site of the prefabricated elements which, immediately
before such disassembly, formed a structure;
(d) the removal of a structure, or of any product or waste resulting from
demolition or dismantling of a structure, or from disassembly of
prefabricated elements which immediately before such disassembly
formed such a structure;
(e) the installation, commissioning, maintenance, repair or removal of
mechanical, electrical, gas, compressed air, hydraulic,
telecommunications, computer or similar services which are normally
fixed within or to a structure,

“structure” means—

(a) any building, timber, masonry, metal or reinforced concrete structure, railway line or siding, tramway line, dock, harbour, inland navigation, tunnel, shaft, bridge, viaduct, waterworks, reservoir, pipe or pipeline, cable, aqueduct, sewer, sewage works, gasholder, road, airfield, sea defence works, river works, drainage works, earthworks, lagoon, dam, wall, caisson, mast, tower, pylon, underground tank, earth retaining structure or structure designed to preserve or alter any natural feature, and fixed plant;
(b) any structure similar to anything specified in paragraph (a);
(c) any formwork, falsework, scaffold or other structure designed or used to provide support or means of access during construction work, and any reference to a structure includes part of a structure;

If any of the above relates to your work activities including any defined structure, even when working for the rail industry the statutory regulations apply.

The Client has the responsibility of notifying the Office of Rail Regulation only where the notification requirements are applicable as identified in regulation 6 of the statutory regulations. The identified Principal Contractor is responsible for displaying the notification at the CDM site where it has been identified by the Client that the project is notifiable. For information purposes the following requirements are where a project is notifiable:

Regulation 6 Notification

(1) A project is notifiable if the construction work on a construction site is
scheduled to—
(a) last longer than 30 working days and have more than 20 workers
working simultaneously at any point in the project; or
(b) exceed 500 person days.

If the above thresholds are not met it does not mean that the statutory regulations do not apply. CDM will still apply however the work is not required to be notified the regulating body.

As a rail supplier if your work activities meet the requirements of the statutory regulations you will have to identify what roles you will be undertaking. In cases this could include multiple roles such as Contractor and Designer or a singular role dependant on the activities. The statutory regulations identify the following roles:


means any person for whom a project is carried out

“Principal Designer”

means the designer appointed under regulation 5(1)(a) to
perform specified duties in regulations 11 and 12

“Principal Contractor”

means the contractor appointed under regulation 5(1)(b) to
perform specified duties in regulations 12 to 14


means any person (including a client, contractor or other person referred
to in these Regulations) who in the course or furtherance of a business—
(a) prepares or modifies a design; or
(b) arranges for, or instructs, any person under their control to do so,
relating to a structure, or to a product or mechanical or electrical system intended
for a particular structure, and a person is deemed to prepare a design where a
design is prepared by a person under their control


means any person (including a non-domestic client) who, in the course
or furtherance of a business, carries out, manages or controls construction work

If you require further advice around the CDM statutory regulations, then it is advised that you speak to a competent occupational safety and health practitioner.

Updated on 5th desember 2022

Was this article helpful?

Related Articles