A construction phase plan is a vital document and a legal requirement. It aims to outline the health and safety concerns pertaining to a particular building job or project. The plan also needs to cover the rules of the site and all procedures that you have put in place to eliminate or minimise the risk to those on-site. In essence, by using this plan, your whole site and team can strive for better safety standards during the project.
What Should be Included in a Construction Phase Plan?
The construction phase plan can be customised to your needs and the specifications of the project, but as a general rule, it tends to adhere to the following structure:
- A description of the project. This should outline the entire project, including vital dates and deadlines. You also need to list the project management team, including information on the client, contractors, suppliers, et cetera.
- Management arrangements. You need to set out the management arrangements for the project. Outline the health and safety protocols and assign the enforcement of such protocols. You need to include things like site rules, accident management, emergency procedures, and security.
- Risk management. All potential hazards and risks on-site need to be outlined along with solutions for how you plan to minimise said risks. You also need to fill out a section on what you are going to do should the design change and lead to new hazards and risks.
- The health and safety file. This is more of a personnel file. You need to detail the workers, their training, their understanding of health and safety risks, and their emergency contact information.
When &How is the Plan Used?
As mentioned above, the construction phase plan is a legal requirement, and therefore, it is needed on all projects regardless of size or duration. Luckily, HS Direct has more information and a few templates to help create the plan. They are needed whether the work is industrial, commercial or residential. The plan itself needs to be finished before any work can start. The document itself is not stagnant; instead, it should be treated as a live document that grows and evolves as the project does. The plan needs to be adapted in order to ensure the least amount of risk to the workers. The plan itself falls to the principal contractor to complete regardless of how many contractors are involved with the project.
Construction phase plans are unavoidable for those working within the building trade. They have to be carried out. Instead of seeing them as an annoying administrative task, try to see them for what they are: an effort to keep all those on-site safe. Avoid phoning it in and doing the bare minimum; make sure that they are detailed and comprehensive in order to prepare for all risks and eventualities. The document needs to be able to adapt as the project progresses, so don’t forget that it isn’t simply a case of completing it once and putting it to the side.