The Bermuda Triangle – The Facts


Flight 19, a group of five Navy bombers on a training mission over the Atlantic suddenly disappeared without a trace in an area now known as the Bermuda Triangle. Authors during the time published stories, articles and books steadily adding to the mysterious happenings in and around the triangle. The articles outlining several other strange disappearances soon featured a triangular drawing on the map in attempts to pinpoint their locations. The triangle now is believed by some to not show any more strange disappearances than any other part of the ocean. Others believe there is substantial non-embellished evidence credible to previous conclusive statements that the Bermuda Triangle is a strange unexplained anomaly.

Airplanes and ships passing through the area do occasionally report compass malfunctions, instrument panel problems, and slight disorientation which could be responsible for mishaps along with human error. A compass will naturally and normally shift at times to fix on the magnetic bearing but this does not account for sporadic spinning coupled with electronic components losing power. Physical anomalies have not been identified in the triangle area though other possible causes have been attributed to hurricanes, methane hydrate fields, rogue waves and even the gulf stream.

Recent theories contest the Bermuda Triangle and other such locations found around the world are products of anomalies and fluctuations in the Earth’s magnetic field. The hot spots for these areas of anomalies and unexplained phenomena were dubbed Vile Vortices, by Ivan T. Sanderson. Strangely enough, another dangerous triangle exists south of Tokyo in the Pacific Ocean, called the Devil’s Sea or Dragon’s Triangle. Japanese maps specifically report the area to be a danger zone having lost hundreds of crew members on several ships over the years. Both the Bermuda and Dragon’s Triangle have reports dating back to the 1950s, equally publicized in their respective areas, though Japanese legends from 1,000 BCE describe how dragons were living off the coast of Japan.


Over the past 100 years, the Bermuda Triangle has seen what some say is a significant and inordinately high number of unexplained disappearances of planes, ships and people. Some reports say that as many as 100 ships and planes have been reported missing in the area and more than 1,000 lives have been lost. The U.S. Coast Guard, however, maintains that the area does not have an unusual number of incidents.

In 1975, Mary Margaret Fuller, editor of “Fate” magazine, contacted Lloyd’s of London for statistics on insurance payoffs for incidents occurring within the Bermuda Triangle’s usually accepted boundaries. According to Lloyd’s records, 428 vessels were reported missing throughout the world between 1955 and 1975, and th­ere was no greater incidence of events occurring in the Bermuda Triangle than anywhere else in the world.


The U.S.S. Cyclops, 1918

During World War I, the U.S.S. Cyclops served along the eastern coast of the United States until January 9, 1918. At that time, she was assigned to the Naval Overseas Transportation Service. The Cyclops was scheduled to sail to Brazil to refuel British ships in the south Atlantic. She set out from Rio de Janeiro on February 16, and, after a brief stop in Barbados from March 3 to 4, was never seen or heard from again. All 306 passengers and crew were gone without a trace.



U.S. Navy Avengers Flight 19, 1945

The most famous Bermuda Triangle story is the mystery surrounding five missing Navy Avengers in 1945. The story of Flight 19 is usually summarized this way: a routine patrol set out on a sunny day with five highly experienced student pilots. Suddenly, the tower began receiving transmissions from the flight leader that they were lost, compasses were not working, and “everything looked wrong.” They were never seen again, and extensive Navy investigations turned up no clues to explain the disappearance.


DC-3 Flight NC-16002, 1948

On December 28, 1948, Captain Robert Lindquist of flight NC-16002 was piloting DC-3 commercial flight NC-16002 from San Juan, Puerto Rico to Miami, Florida. He radioed Miami when they were 50 miles away and requested landing instructions. Miami radioed back with the instructions, but got no reply. The plane never arrived and was never heard from again. Although many reports state there was no radio trouble and that the weather was clear, the accident investigation report from the Civil Aeronautics Board says differently…

The S.S. Marine Sulpher Queen

The S.S. Marine Sulphur Queen was a tanker was bound for Norfolk, Virginia from Beaumont, Texas carrying 15,000 tons of molten sulphur in heated tanks. Its last communication took place on Feb. 3, 1963, when its captain radioed a routine position report. The message placed her near Key West in the Florida Straits. She never reached Virginia.

Three days after the position report, Coast Guard searchers found a single life jacket floating 40 miles southwest of the tanker’s last known position. It’s likely that leaking sulphur may have caused an explosion. Escaping sulphur gas could have poisoned the crew and prevented them from sending a distress call. Officers on a Honduran banana boat reported to the Coast Guard that their freighter ran into a strong, acrid odor 15 miles off Cape San Antonia, the western tip of Cuba, just before dawn on February 3.