The Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) has once again named Bruno Filipe Da Costa Raposo, of Montreal, a Highway Angel. He stopped to help a young woman after her vehicle veered off the road in front of him and went into a ditch.
It’s not every day that Raposo has a woman jumping into his arms, but it happened late one afternoon in February. Raposo was driving on Interstate 80 near Scott, Iowa, and was looking for a place to stop for the night.
“It was snowing really bad and icy,” he told TCA.
Raposo told FreightWaves he was on his way to California, hauling a truckload of chocolates. Due to the nasty weather, Raposo slowed to 50 mph. Then he saw a pickup truck trying to pass him in the left lane of the two-lane highway, which was covered in snow.
“When she was beside my drive axle, she started swerving, so I slowed down even more,” Raposo recalled. “She was able to clear me, but when she passed in front of my truck her rear bumper was just 5 or maybe 6 inches from my bumper, and then she veered off the road and went in the ditch.”
He remembered that the pickup rolled over on its passenger side.
“I pulled over and got out, and she was already standing up inside the pickup cab with her feet on the passenger door. I told her to climb out the driver’s window and then I told her to jump, but she was scared. She had to jump down about 6 feet,” Raposo said. “I told her to jump and I would catch her. She was little, maybe 120 pounds. But I thought, ‘Oh, this is gonna hurt,’ but I caught her and then we both fell into the snow.”
Thankfully, the young woman wasn’t hurt from the accident or the jump.
“I told her she was very lucky,” Raposo said. He told her she could wait in his truck to stay warm. He called 911 and first responders arrived within five minutes.
Raposo didn’t tell anyone at work about what he did. However, the young woman later called Raposo’s employer, Bison Transport, to say thanks for his help that night, but she never got to tell Raposo himself.
He told FreightWaves he helped simply because it was the right thing to do. “I don’t see myself as a hero,” Raposo said. “I did it because someone needed help.”
This is the second time Raposo has been named a Highway Angel. The first was in November for an incident last August near Amarillo, Texas. Raposo saw a man who looked like he was going to jump off a bridge onto the road below. As soon as there was a break in the traffic, Raposo maneuvered his truck to block the highway. Then he got out and talked to the man, empathized with him and calmed him until police arrived. The police were able to convince the man to move back from the edge of the bridge.
Raposo’s family moved to Montreal from São Miguel, Azores, Portugal, when he was young. He learned French at school and taught himself English by listening to the radio at home. Today, he and his wife, Stéphanie, have two young children and are expecting their third child in April.
For his willingness to assist, TCA presented Raposo with a certificate, patch, lapel pin and truck decals. His employer has also received a certificate acknowledging its driver as a Highway Angel.
Since the program’s inception in August 1997, nearly 1,300 professional truck drivers have been recognized as Highway Angels for showing exemplary kindness, courtesy and courage on the job.
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