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Alex Hamer
Written by Alex Hamer

Principal Contractor Duties

What are the Duties and Responsibilities of the Principal Contractor?

General Duties


  • The Principal Contractor MUST have the Skills, Knowledge and Training & Experience (SKATE) to take on the role
  • If the Principal Contractor appoints any other Designers or Contractors – Make sure they have the necessary SKATE
  • Co-operate with everyone involved in the project and make sure everyone under their control co-operates with each other
  • Report any Health & Safety issues that they become aware of to whom they are working for
  • When providing information or instruction – make sure it is comprehensible and provided in good time


Specific Duties


The Principal Contractor must

  • Plan, manage and monitor Health and Safety in the Construction Phase, in particular, when
  • Design, technical and organisational aspects of the project are being decided
  • Estimating periods of time required for programming the work
  • Take account of the General Principles of Prevention and make sure others under their control do
  • Organise co-operation between all contractors on-site and ensure that they implement all legal H&S requirements
  • Provide a Construction Phase Plan BEFORE work starts on site. Review and update when necessary
  • Prevent unauthorised access to the site
  • Provide suitable welfare facilities to comply with Schedule 2
  • Liaise with the Principal Designer on all matters regarding Health and Safety
  • Consult and engage with their workers
  • Provide information for the Health and Safety File to the Principal Designer


Note - This page is for guidance only. Application on a project must comply with the official HSE issue of the Regulations