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  • Writer's pictureMiguel Fernández

Alternatives and Decisions

I was told this by my excellent colleague and friend José Eduardo W. Cavalcanti (Chemical Engineer specialist in water bio-chemistry, successful businessman and active colleague in the professional circles of SP: Instituto de Engenharia, CREA, ABES, as well as author of excellent articles and books): Around 1972 Engº Constantino Arruda Pessoa was a consultant at SANESP, and the offices were in a building on Av. Angélica closer to Consolação. At lunchtime, there was a problem with a secretary from SANESP who was not run over, but was knocked over by a car, lying on the asphalt in the middle of Av Angélica. She wanted to get up but they appeared: a) some who advised her to stay lying down until the ambulance arrived as she could have internal injuries and any movement could be fatal, b) others wanted to take her as urgently as possible to a hospital to be attended to because, those in that chain said, any delay could be fatal! c) there were even some (the victim included) who thought it was nothing and should get up and not disturb the traffic, as Chico Buarque would say. d) A fourth group, formed by lawyers and politicians, wanted you to sign a power of attorney for them to sue 01: the owner of the car, 02: the driver of the car, 03: the manufacturer of the car, 04: the engineer who made the Av Angélica, if there was no ART, 05: the CITY HALL because it allowed cars to circulate accepting the risks, etc. In the end, each one gave a slightly different opinion and there was even a push and shove with some wanting to prevent “by force” the lady from getting up while others wanted to lift her, also “by force”. And the traffic stopped... Seeing that, Constantino, with his usual malice and a smile on his lips, says in a loud voice: “Many sanitaristas and environmentalists give this: several alternatives and no decision!!!” Prophecy (or premonition?) that I'm laughing at to this day.... Constantino was also a great phrase writer. The saying is attributed to him that “THE MOST IMPORTANT UNIT OF A TREATMENT PLANT IS THE BY-PASS” Miguel Fernández, consulting engineer, chronicler and columnist, Dec 26, 2017, 2,140 touches including spaces

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