Bermuda Triangle 2016
Sometimes, when I tell people that Scotty and I have crossed the Atlantic Ocean and have gone through the Bermuda Triangle, I get the usual questions about the Triangle and its mysteries. A member of the family and his wife are taking an extended sailing trip which has taken them into the water known as the Bermuda Triangle, so I thought that maybe we would do a little research. Why does it have so many legends associated with it?
First of all the Bermuda Triangle, also known as the Devil’s Triangle, is an area in the Atlantic Ocean where the disappearance of many people and their aircraft and surface vessels have been attributed to the paranormal or to extraterrestrial beings. Most incidents suggest that the Bermuda Triangle is a sailor’s legend that later became the basis for professional writings.
There are several boundaries given to the Triangle. Some say that it really is a four-sided shape that covers the Straits of Florida, the Bahamas, and goes east to the Azores. Others say that it really is a triangle with its points being Miami, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and Bermuda. Most mysterious incidents happen on the southern border around the Bahamas and the Florida Straits. In either case, our cruise ship docked in the Azores, and our entire trip was uneventful.
The entire area is one of the most heavily sailed shipping lanes in the world. Ships cross it daily going to ports in America, Europe and the Caribbean. Cruise ships regularly go back and forth between Florida and the islands. Aircraft fly the route between Florida and the Caribbean from many Northern points.
The Gulf Stream ocean current flows though the area after it leaves the Gulf of Mexico. It has a current of five to six knots, and some blame many disappearances upon the sudden violent storms and hurricanes that appear often in summer to late fall. Before the telecommunications, radar and satellite technology of the 20th century, it seemed inevitable that the heavy maritime traffic and unpredictable weather led to many a ship sinking and being lost without a trace.
Christopher Columbus was one of the first to write of something strange in the Triangle. He reported that he and his crew observed “strange dancing lights on the horizon”, flames in the sky and odd compass readings. From his logbook, dated October 11, 1492, he wrote of these strange lights in the sky.
Stories of the Bermuda Triangle began appearing in several publications in 1950 and 1952. These included the loss of Flight 19. a group of five U.S. Navy TBM Avenger Bombers on a training mission. Officials at the official Navy Board of Inquiry stated that the plane “flew off to Mars”. The flight came to be known as the “Lost Patrol”, and it was the first time that something supernatural was linked to the Triangle.
In 1964, Vincent Gaddis wrote in Argosy magazine that since there were several mysterious disappearances besides the loss of Flight 19, the area should be called “The Deadly Bermuda Triangle”.
In 1975, David Kusche, a research librarian from Arizona State University and author of “The Bermuda Triangle: Solved”, noted that often pertinent information was not reported. Violent weather was often left out of stories. He came to several conclusions:
The number of missing ships and aircraft in the area was not greater than in any other part of the ocean.
Storms were often reported in connection with disappearances.
Sloppy research often reported a disappearance, but the eventual arrival of the same boat in a port was left unreported.
Some disappearances never even happened. One plane crash reported in 1937, off Daytona Beach, reportedly in front of hundreds of witnesses, never even made the newspapers.
Kusche called the “Legend of the Bermuda Triangle”, a “manufactured mystery”.
Fact or not, Lloyd’s of London does not charge any more in insurance fees for those traveling through the region, and the Coast Guard considers it no more dangerous than any other area through which many ships and planes pass.
The debate continues. Scotty and I love our cruises, and if those cruises take us through the Bermuda Triangle, well, we will just enjoy our days at sea.
So, there you have it… a bit about The Bermuda Triangle.
God bless you.