The Bermuda Triangle, also known as the Devil's Triangle, is an infamous stretch of the Atlantic Ocean bordered by Florida, Bermuda, and Puerto Rico that has been the location of strange disappearances throughout history. The Coast Guard does not recognize the Bermuda Triangle or the supernatural explanations for the mysterious disappearances in its midst. There are some probable explanations for the missing vessels, including hurricanes, undersea earthquakes, and magnetic fields that interfere with compasses and other positioning devices. But it's much more interesting to think the following vessels got sucked into another dimension, abducted by aliens, or simply vanished into thin air.
1. Flight 19
On the afternoon of December 5, 1945, five Avenger torpedo bombers left the Naval Air Station at Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with Lt. Charles Taylor in command of a crew of 13 student pilots. About an hour and a half into the flight, Taylor radioed the base to say that his compasses weren't working, but he figured he was somewhere over the Florida Keys. The lieutenant who received the signal told Taylor to fly north toward Miami, as long as he was sure he was actually over the Keys. Although he was an experienced pilot, Taylor got horribly turned around, and the more he tried to get out of the Keys, the further out to sea he and his crew traveled.
As night fell, radio signals worsened, until, finally, there was nothing at all from Flight 19. A U.S. Navy investigation reported that Taylor's confusion caused the disaster, but his mother convinced them to change the official report to read that the planes went down for "causes unknown." The planes have never been recovered.
The Bermuda Triangle, located off the US east coast, is the location of many unexplained disappearances.
2. Flight 201
This Cessna left Fort Lauderdale on March 31, 1984, en route for Bimini Island in the Bahamas, but it never made it. Not quite midway to its destination, the plane slowed its airspeed significantly, but no radio signals were made from the plane to indicate distress. Suddenly, the plane dropped from the air into the water, completely vanishing from the radar. A woman on Bimini Island swore she saw a plane plunge into the sea about a mile offshore, but no wreckage has ever been found.
Airplanes flying from the US, Great Britain and Bermuda have all fallen somewhere in the Bermuda Triangle. Read on to find out more about these fateful flights.
These ill-fated flights have fallen victim to the mysterious powers of the Bermuda Triangle. Find out how these planes were never heard from again.
3. USS Cyclops
As World War I heated up, America went to battle. The Cyclops, commanded by Lt. G. W. Worley, stayed mostly on the East Coast of the United States until 1918 when it was sent to Brazil to refuel Allied ships. With 309 people onboard, the ship left Rio de Janeiro in February and reached Barbados in March. After that, the Cyclops was never heard from again. The Navy says in its official statement, "The disappearance of this ship has been one of the most baffling mysteries in the annals of the Navy, all attempts to locate her having proved unsuccessful. There were no enemy submarines in the western Atlantic at that time, and in December 1918 every effort was made to obtain from German sources information regarding the disappearance of the vessel."
4. Star Tiger
The Star Tiger, commanded by Capt. B. W. McMillan, was flying from England to Bermuda in January 1948. On January 30, McMillan said he expected to arrive in Bermuda at 5:00 a.m., but neither he nor any of the 31 people onboard the Star Tiger were ever heard from again. When the Civil Air Ministry launched a search and investigation, they learned that the S.S. Troubadour had reported seeing a low-flying aircraft halfway between Bermuda and the entrance to Delaware Bay. If that aircraft was the Star Tiger, it was drastically off course. According to the Civil Air Ministry, the fate of the Star Tiger remains an unsolved mystery.
5. Star Ariel
A Tudor IV aircraft like the Star Tiger left Bermuda on January 17, 1949, with 7 crew members and 13 passengers en route to Jamaica. That morning, Capt. J. C. McPhee reported that the flight was going smoothly. Shortly afterward, another more cryptic message came from the captain, when he reported that he was changing his frequency, and then nothing more was heard, ever. More than 60 aircraft and 13,000 men were deployed to look for the Star Ariel, but not even a hint of debris or wreckage was ever found. After the Ariel disappeared, Tudor IVs were no longer produced.
6. The Spray
Joshua Slocum, the first man to sail solo around the world, never should have been lost at sea, but it appears that's exactly what happened. In 1909, the Spray left the East Coast of the United States for Venezuela via the Caribbean Sea. Slocum was never heard from or seen again and was declared dead in 1924. The ship was solid and Slocum was a pro, so nobody knows what happened. Perhaps he was felled by a larger ship or maybe he was taken down by pirates. No one knows for sure that Slocum disappeared within Triangle waters, but Bermuda buffs claim Slocum's story as part of the legacy of the Devil's Triangle.
7. Teignmouth Electron
Who said that the Bermuda Triangle only swallows up ships and planes? Who's to say it can't make a man go mad, too? Perhaps that's what happened on the Teignmouth Electron in 1969. The Sunday Times Golden Globe Race of 1968 left England on October 31 and required each contestant to sail his ship solo. Donald Crowhurst was one of the entrants, but he never made it to the finish line. The Electron was found abandoned in the middle of the Bermuda Triangle in July 1969. Logbooks recovered from the ship reveal that Crowhurst was deceiving organizers about his position in the race and going a little nutty out there in the big blue ocean. The last entry of his log was dated June 29 -- it is believed that Crowhurst jumped overboard and drowned himself in the Triangle.
01 December 2007