Time and money is snow joke

Contractors, Employers, Architects, Contract Administrators, Project Managers…Dust off the building contract and check whether this weekend’s snow is a valid reason under the contract to allow extra time and/or money to the contractor to finish the project.

According to the met office the mean temperature for January and February across the East of England is 1°c with the average number of days with snow lying varying from about 7 to 20 (depending on which part of the region you are in). Given that February is traditionally one of the coldest months of the winter and our experiences with snow over the last few years, it seems unlikely that this occurrence of snow is exceptionally adverse. Depending on the contract form you are using you may need to wait until the snow is cleared before comparing the number of days of lying snow with the average figures.

Questions to ask yourself are:

  1. Does the contract allow the contractor extra time due to the snow?
  2. Does the weather event entitle the contractor to claim extra money for the delay?
  3. If yes, what is the correct contractual process for the contractor to notify such a claim and is there a time limit for the contractor to observe?

Here is a short guide to get you started:

  • JCT SBC/Q 2011
    • Clause 2.29.9 - Exceptionally adverse weather conditions
    • Clause 2.27.1 - Give notice when it becomes apparent that completion of the works is likely to be delayed
  • JCT SBC/XQ 2011
    • Clause 2.29.8 - Exceptionally adverse weather conditions
    • Clause 2.27.1 - Give notice when it becomes apparent that completion of the works is likely to be delayed
  • JCT DB 2011
    • Clause 2.26.8 - Exceptionally adverse weather conditions
    • Clause 2.24.1 - Give notice when it becomes apparent that completion of the works is likely to be delayed
  • JCT IC 2011
    • Clause 2.20.8 - Exceptionally adverse weather conditions
    • Clause 2.19.1 - Give notice when it becomes apparent that completion of the works is likely to be delayed
  • NEC3 ECC
    • Clause 60.1(13) - Recorded weather measurement which occurs less frequently than once in ten years
    • Clause 61.3 - Notification of the compensation event should be made within eight weeks 
  • FIDIC Red Book
    • Clause 8.4 - Exceptionally adverse climatic conditions
    • Clause 20.1 - Contractor’s claims should be made within 28 days

 

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