of the different players 


The law defines the roles and responsibilities of the different players working in the building industry.


The project owner is the client who ordered the work. The project owner defines the needs and specifications, and approves the work. The project owner ensures that the health and safety officer is involved during all phases of the project and its execution. (Section 238-17, Decree No. 94-1159)

In France, the project owner has the health and safety officer put together a file containing all the necessary information to facilitate risk prevention during subsequent interventions. (Section R. 238-18, Decree No. 94-1159)

In France, this file is called the DIUO (File of Subsequent Work).


The main contractor’s role is to design a structure on behalf of the client as per the client’s specifications and objectives, to coordinate the building work, and to submit the finished work to the client for acceptance.

The main contractor is responsible for safety coordination in civil engineering projects that require building permits issued to private individuals for private use. (Sections 238-17, Decree No. 94-1159).


The architect is often also the main contractor. The architect plays a direct role in ensuring the general principles of safety that have to be considered in architectural designs. (Section 238-17, Decree No. 94-1159)

The decision to opt for personal protection rather than collective can never be justified on the grounds of technical impossibility, since it is incumbent on the project owner to modify the project (together with the architect) so that every situation can be properly resolved through the installation of collective protective equipment. (Source OPPBTP)

Health & safety

The duties of the health & safety officer are defined in section R. 238.18, Decree No. 94-1159:

  • to ensure that the general principles of prevention are implemented effectively
  • to develop the General Health & Safety Coordination Plan (if requested)
  • to define the requirements for installing and using collective protective equipment
  • to organise the way the different companies involved in he project coordinate their activities, use facilities on a joint basis and exchange safety instructions.

The work of the health and safety officer does not alter the nature or scope of the responsibilities incumbent upon each of the players involved in civil building and engineering operations. (Section 238-17, Decree No. 94-1159)

technical controller

The technical controller performs a mandatory technical inspection of the soundness of the building works and related integrated equipment items, as well as the safety conditions of people occupying the constructed structures.