CIRIA Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) Guidance – Impact On Client And Principal Designer Duties Under CDM2015
In July 2009, CIRIA published a guidance document after extensive discussion with UXO specialists and other stakeholders, entitled “Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) ”“ A Guide for the Construction Industry (C681)”. The aim of the document was to provide the UK construction industry with set guidance and a defined process for the management of risks associated with UXO from WWI and WWII aerial bombardment. It is also broadly applicable to the risks from other forms of UXO that might be encountered. It focuses on the needs of the construction professional if there is a suspected UXO on site and covers issues such as what to expect from a UXO specialist.
The potential risk of uncovering UXO is a key consideration for anyone developing a site in the UK. Significant areas of the UK remain contaminated with UXO arising from a variety of sources including military training, wartime bombing and munitions manufacturing or storage.
It is therefore essential for any developer (CDM Client) planning to undertake intrusive works, to obtain an objective, thorough and pragmatic risk assessment to ensure that appropriate risk mitigation measures are put in place based on a good understanding of the potential UXO hazard. This ensures both a safer environment for development and the potential for lower development costs by reducing the prospect of unexpected delays.
In respect of the CDM2015 requirements on Clients and Principal Designers, this applies as follows:-
A client must provide pre-construction information as soon as is practicable to every designer and contractor appointed, or being considered for appointment, to the project and,
The principal designer must””
(a) assist the client in the provision of the pre-construction information required by regulation 4(4); and,
(b) so far as it is within the principal designer’s control, provide pre-construction information, promptly and in a convenient form, to every designer and contractor appointed, or being considered for appointment, to the project
It therefore may be reasonable to consider that UXO investigations are covered by the legal definition of pre-construction information in Regulation 2 “”¦”¦information in the client’s possession or which is reasonably obtainable by or on behalf of the client, which is relevant to the construction work and is of an appropriate level of detail and proportionate to the risks involved”¦.”
Whilst there is no direct regulation of the UXO industry in the UK, Keelagher Okey Klein have access to a National database of UXO Regional Risk Maps which can be used to provide the baseline hazard assessment from which any necessary further investigatory studies may follow. As such KOK are well placed to ensure adequate discharge of the above Client and PD legal duties in this respect. For further information, please contact Paul Jones on 01925 654158.