• Award-winning journalist, Ricardo Boechat, was killed after the helicopter he was travelling in crashed onto a truck on a highway in Sao Paulo on Monday
  • Cell phone videos captured the moment two people came to the aid of the trapped truck driver and worked to free him
  • Boechat was a TV anchor with Brazilian station TV Band and headed its nightly news program
  • The 66-year-old won three Esso Prizes, Brazil’s most prestigious journalism award
  • Boechat is survived by his wife, Veruska, and six children


Good Samaritans were caught on camera rushing to the aid of a truck driver moments after a helicopter carrying an award-winning Brazilian television anchor crashed into a tractor-trailer on a busy highway, instantly killing the newsman. 

Ricardo Boechat, 66, was returning from a university in the city of Campinas when his helicopter crashed onto a truck on the left lane of Anhanguera Highway in northwestern Sao Paulo on Monday.

Police also confirmed that the pilot died.

Alarming cell phone images capture the moment a woman and man are scrambling to clear the debris from wrecked truck.

The woman attempts to pry the door open but she gives up after noticing it’s jammed. The driver was later freed.

The helicopter, a PT-HPG model from 1975, crushed the big rig’s front hood and shattered its windshield.

The chopper’s tail was spotted on the ground near the trailer’s right side.

The rest of the helicopter was engulfed in flames on the shoulder lane and on the highway median.

Boechat who was born in Argentina while his father was serving a diplomatic mission in the neighboring Brazil later became a news star in Brazil.

The veteran journalist anchored TV Band’s main nightly news, as well as hosting a radio program and writing a column for IstoE magazine.

The station cut into its scheduled programming to announce his death at 1.51pm.

Boechat was also a frequent mediator of presidential debates for his network.

During his distinguished career, Boechat won three Esso Award, Brazil’s most prestigious journalism prize, for his reports on corruption. He was noted for poking fun at politicians across the political spectrum.

Police Captain Augusto Paiva said the truck driver suffered only minor injuries.

‘The helicopter tried to land in an access road close to a toll station. But then the truck came and they crashed. The fire occurred because of the collision,’ Paiva said.

President Jair Bolsonaro, a frequent target of Boechat’s criticism, expressed his condolences on Twitter.

Boechat is survived by his wife, Veruska, and six children.