SAIT award honours Michelle Krsek, killed by falling debris

A new scholarship program at SAIT Polytechnic will ensure Michelle Krsek is never forgotten.

City of Calgary teamed up with polytechnic to promote public safety awareness among future construction bosses

The city is teaming up with SAIT Polytechnic to create an academic award aimed at raising awareness of the importance of construction site safety in the memory of Michelle Krsek, 3, who was killed by a piece of metal that fell from a tower. (Calgary Sun)

A new scholarship program at SAIT Polytechnic will ensure Michelle Krsek is never forgotten.

The three-year old died in 2009 when she was struck by a large piece of metal that flew off an 18-storey tower under construction in downtown Calgary on a windy day.

The city is now partnering with the college to keep Krsek’s memory alive.

Future construction industry leaders need to remember their role in keeping people safe, said Marco Civitarese, the city's chief building inspector.

“They've actually dedicated a program of safety within a degree program, and these are our leaders, these are our future project construction managers and these are the people that we deal with every day on the scene, on the site,” he said.

“If they're bringing that component that's so highlighted in a four-year degree program, we wanted to recognize that.”

Two third-year students in the bachelor of science in construction project management program have already been selected for the awards, worth $1,750 each.

Their names will be released in an April 1 ceremony.

Two companies — the building’s owner and a subcontractor — were fined $15,000 each for their roles in the accident.  

Krsek’s death prompted city officials to push for changes to provincial legislation that raised fine limits for putting public health and safety in peril.

They are also working on setting up a wind warning system and creating a multidisciplinary team that would respond to such incidents, the city said.