New rules focus on safety issues

Government releases new construction regulations that will cover landscape professionals.

A rule book for landscape professionals has been taken off the shelves to make way for new construction regulations introduced by the Government. The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) launched its Construction Design & Management Regulations 2007 on 6 April to improve health and safety performance in the construction industry. The new rules emphasise the importance of health and safety at all levels of a project and their overriding importance has led to the withdrawal of the Joint Committee for Landscape Industries (JCLI) Agreement for Landscape Works. The JCLI has agreed that this, its regulation guide for landscaping contractors, is now out of date β€” even though the new rules do not strictly apply to soft landscaping. A JCLI representative said: β€œThe landscape industry believes in the importance of health and safety in construction projects β€” even if the work could be interpreted as outside the definition of construction work in the regulations.” Landscaping contractors who have been using the agreement are advised to instead use the Joint Contracts Tribunal (JCT) Minor Works Building Contract 2005 until a revised edition of the JCLI agreement is drawn up. This is expected to be completed by autumn. Details of the most significant revisions to regulations are on the HSE website at www.hse.gov.uk. The JCLI regulations are available at www.landscapeinstitute.org. Pictured are HSE chief inspector of construction Stephen Williams and health and safety minister Lord McKenzie.

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