NEC ECC: Who is culpable for the programme delay where free issue plant is damaged by the Contractor when offloaded?

A Contractor offloads plant on behalf of a preferred (by the client) sub-contractor but damages it in the process. The replacement is to special order and the new delivery date causes a critical delay to the programme of 4 weeks. Who is culpable? If its the client, then how can the risk be reduced/removed?

I assume this is NEC4 because of the use of the word ‘Client’.

The ‘preferred’ reference is a red-herring as the answer is it would depend upon what is in the subcontract between the Contractor and Subcontractor for liability.

Under the main contract, as far as the Client is concerned, this is a Contractor’s risk - see clause 81.1, 2nd bullet of the NEC4 ECC.