On 6 April 2015, the current ACOP on CDM 2007 (L144 – Managing health and safety in construction) will be withdrawn. It has long been assumed a replacement will be produced alongside the new CDM Regulations.
However, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) admits that it might never replace the outgoing ACOP and has said that guidance is “still on the table”.
It is important to note that Anthony Lees, HSE head of construction policy, made clear he was not ruling out an ACOP completely, saying such a statement would “not be appropriate at that stage”.
The options available include a “minimalist ACOP”, an ACOP based on the L series and finally, no ACOP.
The lack of an ACOP is definitely a strange concept. The CDM ACOP was staple with the Regulations themselves, so the idea that not only are new Regulations going to come in, they will come in without the solid guidance of an ACOP.
ACOPs are useful, because, short of being legislation, they are referenced in courts of law and by professionals across a range of industries. They are informed pieces of guidance, written for the purpose of following the Regulations to the standard of compliance.
The thought of not having this clear-cut source of information and advice is a little odd, and hopefully any alternative that is ultimately settled upon will be up to the task of aiding those who need to comply, not hinder them.
For more information, see the:
- Construction (Design and Management) Regulations SI 2015/51.