UFO ON THE SEA NEAR RIO
Dr. W. Buhler
London last year, Dr. J. Allen Hynek spoke of the obvious importance of
multi-witness cases. This Interesting Brazilian episode, which certainly
falls within that category, was reported to us by Dr. Buhler when in England
soon after its occurrence. Gordon Creighton prepared the material for
publication; but this was delayed as we needed clarification on a few points.
We are now able to present, with a few addenda to the concluding section on
previous occurrences in the Tijuca area, a much more detailed version after
perusal of the original Portuguese text by the author which appears in SBEDV
Bulletin No. 74/79 for May 1970-February 1971.
incident, which took place in broad daylight, at 11:40 a.m. on June 27, 1970,
is notable because it was certainly observed by, at least eight witnesses,
and because it illustrates graphically how, the UFOs, are approaching ever
closer to our densely populated urban centres. A great metallic disc came
down on the surface of the South Atlantic Ocean, not much more than 500
metres or so from the Avenida Niemeyer, a famous coastal road, cut out of the
cliffs, which affords a beautiful view over the, sea and runs in a
south-westerly direction from the Rio de Janeiro suburb of Leblon.
KEY: (1) Leblon. (2) Copacabana
Fort. (4) Avenida Niemeyer. (5)
(7) Barra da Tijuca. (9) Island Group
remained on the surface of the water for half an hour, and two crewmen were
seen inside it, wearing helmets and bright grayish aluminum-colored garments
resembling the garb of our astronauts. When the disc took off, it left behind
it on the sea a sort of ring or hoop which had apparently served some
function, perhaps as a float or stabilizer on which it had rested.
Niemeyer is at a height of some 30-40 metres above the sea along the section
in question, and the particular house from which the witnesses made their
sighting is located even higher up, above the road. It was a Sunday, and in
fine weather no less than 1,800 cars, so we estimate, would have been passing
there hourly. Earlier on the morning in question I had been in that area
myself, and I recall that at 7.00 a.m. the sky was still fairly clouded over.
( it should be borne in mind that in the southern
hemisphere June is in the less sunny part of the year ).
the adult witnesses, whom I have interviewed, are Senhor Aristeu Machado and
his wife Dona Maria Nazaré Machado, who live at No. 318, Avenida Niemeyer,
and their neighbour and visitor, Sr. João Aguiar, who is an official of the
Brazilian Federal Police and resides nearby at No. 210 on the same Avenue.
The fourth adult witness is the Machado's eldest daughter, Creuza, aged 23.
The remaining four witnesses were the rest of the Machado girls, Consuelo,
aged 14; Rosemary, aged 10; Margarida, aged 8; and Cátìa, aged 5 (I did not
interview any of the five girls, but only their parents and Sr. João Aguiar).
It was in fact Dr. Carlos Netto, of the Rio newspaper “Diário de Notícias”,
who notified me immediately of the occurrence, with the result that I was
able to accompany him to the spot and talk to the witnesses at four o'clock
on the afternoon of the same day. (Incidentally, it may be noted that the “Diário
de Notícias” was the first Rio de Janeiro newspaper to treat the UFO Problem
seriously and with a certain degree of consistency.)
The episode begins, and occupants seen
The Machados’ account is as follows:
Nazaré Machado was in the kitchen, preparing the lunch. From time to time she
would step out on to the veranda, where the rest of the family, with Sr.
Aguiar, were amusing themselves with a party game. At one point she enquired
what the time was. It was 11:38. About two minutes after that, Sr. Aguiar
happened to glance out over the sea, and quickly called the attention of the
others to what he thought was "a motor-boat striking the water,"
for, as the object descended, it threw up spray on all sides around it
they all abandoned their game and began a vigorous discussion as to what to
do about it, and as to whether or not the "motorboat" was in need
of assistance, for they could see two "bathers" inside the craft
who seemed to be signaling with their arms. Sr. Aguiar was positive that
there were two persons in the craft, wearing shining clothing and
"something on their heads." They seemed to be "thickish set
and quite small."
persons in question appeared to be working on the deck of the craft, which
was of a grayish metallic colour, and looked as though it might have been
between 4 and 6 metres in length. It was covered with a transparent cupola
decided that Sr. Aguiar should run to the nearby Mar Hotel to telephone to
the rescue authorities, while the rest of the party continued to watch the
object closely. It had come down on the sea just where the water always looks
darker, at the dividing line between the darker in-shore water and the
clearer water of the open ocean.
The newspaper report in “Diário de
Notícias” of June 28, 1970, states that the area of the sea where the disc
came down was about 500 metres from the shore, although later examination of
the case suggests that it could well have been rather more than that, perhaps
700, or even 1,000 metres. In any case, remarkably close to the shore!
subsequent enquiries I learnt that the disc at one time moved in about 100
metres nearer to the shore. No sound was heard from it at any time, nor did
it display the characteristic type of "bobbing" movement to have
been expected from a boat.
Disc takes off
spent by Sr. Aguiar in going to and from the Mar Hotel (1 kilometre distant,
towards Leblon) was, at the outside, 23 to 35 minutes. When he returned to
the Machedos', apartment, the disc was still on the sea, and he was one of
those who saw it take off again. We may say therefore that the duration of
its stay on the water was about 40 minutes.
informed us that when the disc took off, it did not rise straight up, but
skimmed along for about 300 metres on the surface of the sea, throwing out
the usual sort of bow-wave such as we see with our own fast motor-boats. In
fact, it was only when the machine had become airborne and was moving away in
a low arc out to sea towards the south-east that the witnesses realised that
it was not an ordinary boat, but a flying saucer...
Dona Maria Nazaré showed herself to be an excellent
observer for, as the disc took off, she noted that, on its under-side (Fig.
3), it had a hexagonal-shaped object which she said looked like the Brazilian
fruit known as the carambola.*
* Translator's Note: The carambola, also known as the
pitanga, or the Surinam Cherry (Averrhoa Carambola, L.). A juicy, quince-flavoured
fruit. Its segments, I recall, are most strangely shaped, very angular, like
nothing I have ever seen elsewhere. But although we had carambola trees in
our Brazilian garden, neither my wife nor I can now (at this distance in
years) make a sketch of these segments from memory, and I have discovered no
handy source in England where an illustration may be found—G. CREIGHTON.
seemed as though retracted up into the craft, and there were a number of
coloured lights on the carambola-like object, flashing always in the same
sequence, viz.: green, pale yellow, and red. (Other reports have suggested
one rotating light changing colours through this sequence.)
Occupants seen again
the disc appeared to be made of aluminum when resting on the sea, but once
airborne, it looked transparent. At this point Dona Maria Nazaré could
clearly see the two occupants sitting inside the craft.
little traffic along the Avenue at that hour, and consequently not much
traffic noise. Nevertheless, as indicated above, none of the witnesses heard
any sound that they thought came from the disc. Once airborne, the disc was
speedily out of sight.
The "hoop" appears
On the area
of sea where it had rested there was a "white, hooped-shaped object, of
the size of a trunk or a chest" (Dona Maria Nazaré’s own description).
After a short while this "hoop" sank. Then it reappeared, and from
it there separated off a yellow, oval-shaped object the diameter of which,
across its widest point, was approximately 40 centimetres, and which was
floating with about 20 centimetres projecting above the surface of the water.
remaining stationary for about three minutes, this oval, yellow object began
to move slowly towards the beach, with its longer axis pointed in the
direction of the witnesses' house. At the further end of the object there was
a greenish flange which later separated off from the main (yellow) body and
continued to follow it "at a distance of about 80 centimetres."
lapse of time which Dona Maria Nazaré estimated at about 15 minutes, the
yellow object had come to a distance of about 120 metres from the shore. It
then performed a right-angled turn left-wards, and headed off towards the beach
at Gávea, still keeping always at more or less the same distance out from the
rocks of the shore. This movement (westwards) was in fact contrary to the
maritime current prevailing in the area at the time.
Nazaré then went down on to the road in front of her house and tried to
observe the further movements of the yellow object. With her there were some
boys who happened to come along at the time, and she pointed out the object
to them. The boys tried to hit it by throwing stones at it, but without
success. This phase lasted a further ten minutes or so, after which time it
vanished from their view around the rocky promontory, some 500 metres from
where they were standing.
the "white hoop" was still in view, after having disappeared
temporarily several times, and it was steadily approaching the Gávea beach as
though it were going to join up again there with the yellow object. They
watched the white hoop for a total period of 20 minutes or so as it kept
vanishing and then reappearing, until it too was finally lost to sight.
who had been interrupted in their parlour game when they first saw the disc
just before noon, only returned to the veranda to finish the game at 3.00
p.m., when the sighting was all over, and they did not get their lunch until
As for the
phone call made by Sr. João Aguiar, it was to the Harbour Police, whose
headquarters are near the Calabouço Airport, in the central part of Rio de
Janeiro. So it would have been at least an hour before, normally, one would
have expected a Harbour Police patrol boat to have got to the scene. When he
called them, the Harbour Police checked up on Sr. Aguiar's own telephone
number (he of course being a Federal agent himself) and they promised to send
help to the parties involved in the presumed mishap off-shore. Sr. Aguiar was
consequently quite surprised when, after only about 20 minutes, he saw a fast
motor-launch heading out towards the islands (Ilha das Palmas and Ilha
motor-launch was no doubt one normally stationed at the Fort de Copacabana.
We do not know whether its crew saw the UFO take off, but it may be assumed
that they did, for they would have had the UFO in view long before they
reached the area from which it took off and where the "white hoop"
got there, the motor-launch stopped at a distance of about 1 kilometre from
the shore. Then the witnesses saw the crew of the launch hoist aboard, with
great difficulty, a cylindrical red object (the difficulty being due no doubt
to the great weight of this object). Having done this, the motor-launch
returned at high speed to its point of origin.
Commits and theories
a priori, guess the purpose of such a descent on the sea by
Extraterrestrials. Could it be that they aimed to investigate certain local
conditions by means of some sondes (the objects floating in the sea which
they released?) or were these latter perhaps spare parts, destined for one of
the Extraterrestrials' submarine bases, and which would have floated off,
under automatic control, towards that base? Or could they perhaps have been
automatic devices which, either afloat or submerged, could transmit
information about the psychological reactions of the witnesses, say, in the
house at No. 318, Avenida Niemeyer and, later, also of the folk bathing on
the beaches at Gávea and Barra da Tijuca? Would these sondes perhaps have
been recovered later, or would they have gone floating off to be lost in the
Or could they be some sort of devices
which might have a long-term effect on human (i.e. terrestrial human
This reference: Flying Saucer Review. Vol. 17, No. 3.
May/June 1971, pp. 3-7 “UFO ON THE SEA NEAR RIO” by Dr. W. Buhler
Need: SBEDV Bulletin No. 74/79 for May
UFOCAT PRN – 116198 [06-21-1970]
UFOCAT URN – 051327 APRO Bulletin, July 1970, p. 6
UFOCAT URN – 104911 Flying Saucer Magazine (Palmer),
March 1972, p. 11
UFOCAT URN – 126024 Les Extra-Terrestres by Jader
Pereira, N16, © 1974
UFOCAT URN – 088865 Encounters With UFO Occupants by
Coral Lorenzen, p. 164, © 1976
UFOCAT URN – 171052 *U* UFO Computer Database by Larry
Hatch, # 09097 © 2002
UFOCAT PRN – 116198
UFOCAT URN – 071391 Flying Saucer Review. Vol. 17, No.
3. May/June 1971, pp. 3-7 “UFO
On The Sea Near Rio” by Dr. W. Buhler
UFOCAT URN – 145204 The UFO Evidence: Vol. 2 by Richard
Hall, p. 15, © 2000
UFOCAT URN – 152332 The UFO Evidence: Vol. 2 by Richard
Hall, p. 460, © 2000
UFOCAT URN – 152400 The UFO Evidence: Vol. 2 by Richard
Hall, p. 482, © 2000
UFOCAT URN – 051338 Computerized Catalog (N=3173), #2917
by L Schoenherr. No © date.
UFOCAT URN – 116198 HUMCAT: Catalogue of Humanoid
Reports, A1086, by D. Webb No ©
UFOCAT URN – 077885 Ted Bloecher Investigation Files.
America – Brazil, Rio Janeiro
Barra da Tijuca Latitude
23-01 S, Longitude 43-18 W (D-M)
Rio de Janeiro Latitude
22-54 S, Longitude 43-14 W
Copacabana Fort Latitude
22-58 S, Longitude 43-10 W [Beach]
22-59 S, Longitude 43-13 W [Beach]
23-00 S, Longitude 43-16 W
Ilha das Palmas Latitude
23-02 S, Longitude 43-12 W
Ilha Comprida Latitude
23-02 S, Longitude 43-12 W
Reference: Brazil Gazetteer, Prepared in the Office of
Geography, Department of the Interior, Washington, D.C., January 1963
Avenida Niemeyer Latitude
22.91 S, Longitude 43.16 W (D.%)
22.99 S, Longitude 43.25 W
Leblon SW Latitude
23.00 S, Longitude 43.23 W
Rio de Janeiro Latitude
22.91 S, Longitude 43.16 W