The new CDM regulations are due to come into force next year.

The number of fatalities on construction sites last year was 70 – more or less the same as when the regulations first came into force 10 years ago. The idea behind the new regulations seems to be that if the medicine isn’t working, increase the dosage.

Few outside the health and safety industry expect the new CDM regulations to have any significant effect upon the level of fatalities. Perhaps it is time to apply the carrot in place of the stick. Paying a bonus to on-site operatives and staff after the completion of projects where the site has been accident-free may be more effective than increasing regulations.

As this starts to take effect, the regulations and associated expenditure that currently add 2% to the cost of a project could be reduced to provide money for the bonus payments.

Roger Knowles, chairman, Knowles