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That’s really true of the legend of the Bermuda Triangle

From TRAVELBOOK | June 2nd, 2020, 1:30 p.m.

The Bermuda Triangle has always fascinated people - a noticeable number of planes and ships disappeared here without a plausible explanation. But what is really behind the myth?

The legendary triangle that lies in the Atlantic between the Bermuda Islands, Miami and Puerto Rico - everyone knows it, but hardly anyone knows what is really hidden behind the sea area in the Atlantic. Not only did ships and airplanes disappear here as if from the ground, but there was also talk of phenomena such as wildly rotating compasses and crazy devices. Time holes? Aliens? Supernatural machinations? People have always been looking for answers to the supposedly inexplicable, including numerous well-known scientists.

The most famous case is Flight 19

The most famous case is Flight 19. In 1945, five US torpedo bombers flew a test flight. Although the lieutenant kept radio contact with a ground station, the fleet got lost. Without orientation, the five machines flew across the Atlantic and tried to find the safe mainland with the help of the ground station and the orientation of the lieutenant before the gas ran out. But radio contact with the five pilots, whose compasses did not seem to be working, broke off - and the machines disappeared without a trace. Neither part of the wreckage nor a corpse of the 14-man crew could ever be recovered.

The huge carrier ship USS Cyclops also disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle. On March 4, 1918, the ship set sail with 306 people on board and has never been sighted since. Thirty years later, the Douglas DC-3 aircraft disappeared. Thinking that he was close to the destination airport, the pilot asked for permission to land. The airport responded with instructions to which the captain no longer responded. None of the 37 passengers have ever been found, and the plane has been lost to this day.

Aliens, giant octopuses, or the US government?

There are now many theories that deal with the Bermuda Triangle, also known as the Devil's Triangle. Charles Berlitz († 2003) dealt with the topic and published the bestseller “The Bermuda Triangle: Window to the Cosmos?”. The author tried to attribute the incidents to supernatural forces. In his book he reports that the missing ships and planes mostly disappeared in good weather and without an emergency call. He attributed the mysterious occurrences to puzzling force fields and aliens that humans would need for a space zoo.

The magazine “Der Spiegel” aptly wrote in an article in 1975: “Berlitz offers more explanations than the mind can handle.” Nevertheless, his book became world-famous and to this day ensures that the mysterious legend of the Bermuda Triangle is kept alive.

Even in relevant forums, people are still looking for explanations for the phenomena ascribed to the triangle - as absurd as they may be. Conspiracy theorists are certain that the US government has a hand in it: it is said to have a huge underwater station in the Bermuda Triangle. Others believe aliens have established a base in the triangle.

Here, too, things are not right: Hoia Baciu - The European Bermuda Triangle

Big waves and blowouts

But there are also serious attempts to explain the disappearance of the ships. According to the blowout theory, there are large amounts of methane gas in the sea, which rises from the subsurface. The gas, released by underwater quakes, combines with the water. The resulting mixture has a lower density than water, the result: seawater floods the decks, the hulls fill up, the ships sink. This phenomenon is explained in more detail in a documentation from "National Geographic" on YouTube.

So-called giant waves, which could be proven in 1995, are another attempt at an explanation. According to the German science magazine “Welt der Physik”, a giant wave is a “wave created from superimposed waves that reaches enormous size and strength”. Such a wave has the potential to crush and sink ships. In 2018, a team of scientists from the University of Southampton in the UK led by oceanographer Simon Boxall carried out a model test to prove this theory. In a contribution on the British TV station Channel 5, the oceanographer explains how the wave could tear a ship in two and cause it to sink in a matter of minutes. To prove his theory, he built a model of the USS Cyclops. According to Boxall, when the ship disappeared, three heavy storms crossed in the Atlantic, hitting the ship from three different directions. To prove this, he created a model of the Cyclops and calculated the course of a monster wave that could form from the storms. In a model tank, he then simulated how the waves of three storms affected the coordinates of the USS Cyclops. In the video you can see how a giant wave forms in the tank, which the model ship buries under itself within a very short time.

Not all that unusual?

The author and pilot Larry Kusche writes in his book "The Riddles of the Bermuda Triangle Are Solved", however, that there are no more accidents in the Bermuda Triangle than in comparable sea areas. And the Society for the Scientific Investigation of Parasciences e. V. says: "Later investigations could not find an unnatural accumulation of incidents in the Bermuda Triangle and made corresponding attempts at explanation superfluous."

Kusche also uncovered that Berlitz made numerous false statements in his book: he had falsified the weather conditions, misplaced the coordinates of the accidents so that they took place in the Bermuda Triangle or did not mention that some of the pilots were inexperienced. The Helmholtz Center for Ocean Research also confirmed to TRAVELBOOK that there were no scientifically serious indications "that the so-called Bermuda Triangle could be more dangerous or mysterious than other marine areas".

So the Bermuda Triangle is not an inexplicable myth after all? Nothing more than a product of our longing for the inexplicable, the mysterious? In fact, everything points to it. Still, the conspiracy theorists won't give up anytime soon ...

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