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Bermuda Triangle disappearances

Updated on October 8, 2014

Also called the Devil's Triangle, the Bermuda Triangle is a stretch of water mass situated near northwestern Atlantic Ocean. It is a place where several planes and ships have mysteriously disappeared or met with fatal accidents. The Bermuda Triangle is spread across nearly 500, 0000 square miles in the Atlantic Ocean.The end-points of the triangle occur in the adjacent regions of San Juan, Florida, Puerto Rico, Miami and Bermuda.

The Bermuda Triangle disappearances became public knowledge in the 1400s. It has continued even into the 21st century. There are several theories and explanations about the Bermuda Triangle disappearances. The causes may be man-made like pirate attacks in the olden days, wars, etc.; alien, supernatural, or ghostly activities; or natural causes like underwater earthquakes that create sudden large waves, periodic eruptions of methane present on the ocean floor, and weather disturbances, etc. It may be noted that the Bermuda Triangle has some of the deepest trenches in the world and experiences extreme seismic activity. However, none of these postulations have been able to completely elucidate the mystery.

Christopher Columbus reported unusual compass readings and weird lights in 1492. The varied Bermuda Triangle disappearances are listed below in chronological order:

  • 1609: When attempting to colonize Bermuda, the Sea Venture got destroyed.
  • 1812: Theodosia Burr Alston, the daughter of former US Vice President Aaron Burr disappeared on December 30, 1812 along with the boat Patriot when sailing to New York City from Charleston, South Carolina.
  • 1814: The crew and the ship USS Epervier was lost at sea in the Bermuda Triangle. It was transporting the peace treaty to close the war between the North African Barbary States and America.
  • 1855: James B. Chester, a schooner was found without its crew floating in the ocean. The lifeboats were still there and there were no indications of a struggle.
  • 1872: Mary Celeste, referred to as the ghost ship of the Bermuda Triangle, was found floating in the Strait of Gibraltar without any crew. The captain’s log was the only documentation that was present on the ship. The ship had set sail for Genoa, Italy from New York.
  • 1881: The Ellen Austin ship found another ship floating in the ocean without any crew. Some of the crew of Ellen Austin boarded the other ship in order to sail it to New York. The ship disappeared once again. It was later found, again with no crew on board. Then it was lost again never to be found.
  • 1909: Joshua Slocum, the first sailor to solo circumnavigate the world, left for Venezuela from Vineyard Haven on board his rebuilt fishing boat turned ocean cruiser, S.V. Spray. He and the boat were never seen again.
  • 1918: After leaving Barbados, the USS Cyclops carrying a crew of 309 disappeared without a trace. The loss of this naval ship is considered as the biggest loss of life in US Navy’s history.
  • 1941: The USS Nereus and the USS Proteus went missing when sailing along the route taken by the sister US Navy ship USS Cyclops in 1918.
  • 1945: Training aircraft called Flight 19 belonging to US Navy’s TBM Avenger bombers disappeared when flying over the Bermuda Triangle on Dec 5, 1945. Their flight schedule involved going for 120 miles from the Florida Naval Base, then 73 miles north, and later back to the naval base via a 120-mile route. A 13-member crew aboard 2 rescue PBM Martin Mariner aircraft then went to search for the missing flights. One of these flights also went missing without a trace.
  • 1947: It is believed that a sudden thunderstorm led to the disintegration of a C-54 aircraft, but it has never been fully validated.
  • 1948: In January 1948, a Tudor Mark IV aircraft, i.e., the Tudor Star Tiger went missing over the Bermuda Triangle before it was supposed to land at the Bermuda airport.
  • 1948: On December 28, 1948, a Douglas DC-3 NC16002 flight went missing about fifty miles south of Florida before it was to land in Miami.
  • 1954: On October 30, 1954, a Super Constellation Naval Airliner, flight 441, disappeared from the radar when flying over the Bermuda Triangle.
  • 1963: A 524-foot ship called Marine Sulfur Queen disappeared in the Florida Straits after sailing from Beaumont, Texas two days before. It was carrying molten sulfur and a crew of 39.
  • 1967: On the night of 22nd December 1967, a 23-foot cabin cruiser called Witchcraft got lost in the Bermuda Triangle. The captain had sailed it offshore just for a view of the Miami lights and shoreline.
  • 1968: In May 1968, a nuclear-powered submarine, i.e., the USS Scorpion SSN-589, belonging to the US Navy vanished in the Bermuda Triangle.
  • 1971: A USAF Phantom jet called Sting-27 was reported lost in the Bermuda Triangle. The official story was that the plane may have experienced an impact, but the specifics were never disclosed.
  • 1976: A 590-foot ore carrier called Sylvia L. Ossa carrying 37 crew members vanished about 140 miles from Bermuda.
  • 1991: A routine request was made by the pilot flying a Grumman Cougar jet for increasing altitude. As the plane ascended it fell off the radar and eventually disappeared.
  • 1999: Genesis, a cargo freighter, experienced malfunction of the bilge pump and sent a radio signal to nearby vessels. The boat and its crew were never heard or seen again despite exhaustive search operations by the Coast Guard.
  • 2003: Romina and Frank Leone, a newly married couple, set sail from Florida’s Boynton Beach inlet on their new boat on a fishing trip. They were never seen again. The search and rescue team of the Coast Guard scanned a large section of the sea for many days but did not find them.
  • 2005: On June 20, 2005, a Piper-PA aircraft carrying 3 people went missing in the Bermuda Triangle between Fort Pierce of Florida and Treasure Cay Island of the Bahamas.
  • 2007: On April 10, 2007, another Piper-PA aircraft with only the pilot disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle near Berry Island.
  • 2008: On December 15 2008, a 3-engine Trislander or a Britten-Norman Islander carrying 12 people and flying to New York from Santiago disappeared from the radar, about thirty-five minutes after takeoff.Despite an extensive search operation by the US Coast Guards the plane was never found. Even the aircraft’s debris is yet to be found. The last known location of the aircraft was approximately four miles west of the West Caicos Island.


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