How You Qualify as a PSDP - Chris Mee Group | CMSE

How You Qualify as a PSDP

Construction manager and engineer working on building siteTo be a PSDP you do not have to be a designer or carry out design work.

According to the HSA to qualify as a PSDP you must have:

  • Familiarity with the type of construction work involved with the project
  • A sound understanding of the safety and health issues associated with that work
  • Good communication skills and systems
  • Sufficient training appropriate to the type of work, e.g. a recognised certificate, higher certificate, or degree in Safety and Health awarded as part of the national framework of qualifications.

In order to improve health and safety in the construction industry the Safety, Health and Welfare Construction Regulations 2013 assigned duties and responsibilities to the client to appoint a project supervisor design process (PSDP). The duties of the PSDP are to engage and manage all the participants involved in the health & safety of a project from conception to completion.

The PSDP is usually appointed even before the design work commences. This early intervention in H&S by effective PSDP has minimised costs for many of our leading clients. The PSDP can often be a firm of architects, chartered surveyors, consulting engineers or project managers. When the design requirements are minimal, it can be the main contractor. The regulations also require that only 1 PSDP is appointed for each independ-ent project.
As an experienced industry professional you may certainly have the relevant experience and the communication skills to act as project supervisor. It is as a direct result of the demand for satisfying the last HSA requirement for training that our industry experts here at CMSE Consultancy have developed PSDP training. We have provided this training not only to private clients but also on public basis to anyone who needs to become educated on the role and function of a PSDP. This training is approved by IOSH and provides an industry-recognised IOSH certification upon successful completion of the course.

Your primary role as a PSDP will be to ensure safety not act as a designer.

You will have to manage the safety file and ensure co-ordination of all design activities with a view to protecting the safety, health and welfare of persons involved in construction work.

According to the HSA your primary duties will be to:

  • Ensure that the work of designers is co-ordinated to ensure safety
  • Identify hazards arising from the design or from the technical, organisational, planning or time related aspects of the project
  • Where possible, eliminate the hazards or reduce the risk
  • Communicate necessary control measures, design assumptions or remaining risks to the PSCS so they can be dealt with in the Construction Safety and Health Plan
  • Organise co-operation between designers
  • Prepare a written safety and health plan for any project where construction will take more than 500 person days or 30 working days or there is a particular risk and deliver it to the client prior to tender
  • Prepare a safety file for the completed structure and give it to the client
  • Notify the Authority and client of non-compliance with any written directions issued
  • Issue directions to designers or contractors or others as required

In practical terms one of your main responsibilities as a PSDP will be to take account of the general principles of prevention during the various stages of the design and preparation of a project. You will establish the project timeframe with the co-operation of the client and the designers. You will need to be satisfied that all work will be completed within reasonable time frames.
You will need to consider how the activities of each designer impinge on other designers and how risk assessments may need modification as a result of this. You will have a key role in identifying any gaps that may have been left in the assessment process.

You will have to prepare a written H&S plan.

According to the HSA the main purpose of initiating the plan is to provide the following information:

  • A general description of the project
  • Any other work activities taking place on site;
  • Work involving particular risks
  • The timescale for the project and the basis on which the time frame was established;
  • Conclusions drawn by designers and the PSDP
  • The location of electricity water and sewage connections so as to facilitate early establishment of welfare facilities.

According to HSA the Safety and Health Plan must also provide information on Particular Risks.

  1. Work which puts persons at work at risk of: (a) falling from a height; (b) burial under earth-falls; or (c) engulfment in swampland.
  2. Work which puts persons at work at risk from chemical or biological substances constituting a particular danger to the safety and health of such persons or involving a statutory requirement for health monitoring.
  3. Work with ionising radiation requiring the designation of controlled or supervised areas
  4. Work near high-voltage power lines.
  5. Work exposing persons at work to the risk of drowning.
  6. Work on wells, underground earthworks, and tunnels.
  7. Work carried out by divers at work having a system of air supply.
  8. Work carried out in a caisson with a compressed-air atmosphere.
  9. Work involving the use of explosives.
  10. Work involving the assembly or dismantling of heavy prefabricated components.

Where these risks are likely to be aggravated by the presence of another significant hazard then a particular risk may be present, for example working at height adjacent to fragile roofing materials may make it impracticable to provide standard scaffolding.
There may also be a specific legal requirement for health monitoring where a work activity puts a person’s health at risk from hazardous substances or preparations e.g. stripping of lagging which contains asbestos. The detail that is required in documenting this will depend on the complexity of the project. However, you will be required to document how you have complied and your conclusions will also need to give clarity to the PSCS and others during the construction of the project.

You will need to prepare a Safety File and present this to the Client when the project is complete. According to the HSA the file normally contains:

  1. construction drawings, specifications and bills of quantities, used and produced throughout the construction process
  2. the general design criteria adopted, and details of the equipment and maintenance facilities within the structure
  3. maintenance procedures and requirements for the structure
  4. manuals, and where appropriate certificates, produced by specialist contractors and suppliers which outline operating and maintenance procedures and schedules for plant and equipment installed as part of the structure
  5. details of the location and nature of utilities and services, including emergency and fire-fighting systems

CMSE Consultancy have a reputation for generating significant savings because of our policy of early intervention in design safety issues. CMSE Consultancy provide effective safety expertise to assist designers, architects, project managers, etc in fulfilling the PSDP and Health & Safety Co-Ordinator roles. The practicality and ease of application of our solutions is the halmark of our services. For more details please click here

The two day CMSE Training IOSH accredited, PSDP course will provide you with a comprehensive review of regulation legislation, the duties of the PSDP, of designers and also the general principles of prevention. The course will also give you the opportunity to participate in practical workshops on developing your preliminary H&S plan and carrying out designer risk assessments. The course will also provide you with a review of effective management of the safety file and a construction plan. Upon successful completion of the course you will receive your IOSH PSDP Certification which will prepare you to return to your workplace ready ready to implement your new PSDP skills and knowledge. For more details on the course please click here 

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