Two of the so-called Bermuda Triangle’s most mysterious disappearances in the late 1940s may have been solved.
Scores of ships and planes are said to have vanished without trace over the decades in a vast triangular area of ocean with imaginary points in Bermuda, Florida and Puerto Rico.
But journalist Tom Mangold’s new examination for the BBC provides plausible explanations for the disappearance of two British commercial planes in the area, with the loss of 51 passengers and crew.
One plane probably suffered from catastrophic technical failure as a result of poor design, while the other is likely to have run out of fuel.
Sixty years ago, commercial flights from London to Bermuda were new and perilous. It would require a refuelling stop on the Azores before the 2,000-mile flight to Bermuda, which at that time was the longest non-stop commercial overseas flight in the world.
The planes would have been operating at the limit of their range. Today planes arriving at the tiny Atlantic island have sufficient reserve fuel to divert to the US East Coast 700 miles away, in case of emergency.
And the planes of the post-war era were far less reliable than today’s airliners.
British South American Airways (BSAA), which operated the route, had a grim safety record. In three years it had had 11 serious accidents and lost five planes with 73 passengers and 22 crew members killed.
Ran out of gas? Possibly, but methane bubbles seem more likely to me.
Methane is a gas lighter than air. When the ocean creates methane bubbles, the bubbles, which can be larger that the ship, changes the water density so it cannot support the ship. The ship can sink in a matter of seconds. Methane bubbles can also be hazardous to airplanes. The methane can rise from the sea to the air, displacing the oxygen around the airplane. The altimeter depends on the density of the air outside of the airplane. Since methane is less dense that oxygen, the altitude tells the pilot they are climbing. If the sky is cloudy or it is night, it’s hard to see the ocean outside to determine altitude. The pilot dives, thinking they are going too high, and crashes into the water. – thinkquest
Here is another description from a different site and some evidence.
Ships float nicely in water, but if you try to make them float in a mix of water and bubbles, they sink like a set of car keys. There’s an area of the ocean called Witch Ground, about 150 kilometres north east of Aberdeen in Scotland. We know that methane bubbles up from time to time, leaving pock marks in the ocean floor. Witchs Hole is a large pock mark on the ocean floor, in Witch’s Ground, about 100 metres across. And recently, a trawler has been discovered sitting underwater, perfectly upright, in the middle of this small 100-metre wide methane production hole (or pockmark). It’s a steel-built vessel around 25 metres long, built somewhen between 1890 and 1930. We’re guessing, but if a large burst of methane bubbles rose up, the trawler would lose all flotation, and just sink, perfectly level, until it bottomed out on the ocean floor.
And if some really large bubbles of methane gas were to rise in the atmosphere and then get sucked into the engines of a jet, they could make a nasty explosion.
This Methane Bubbling Effect, which happens in the Bermuda Triangle, could also explain some of the strange disappearances. – abc.net.au
Another interesting point:
Large methane bubbles can also act like lenses (look up “gradient-index lenses”) that can make distant ships seem to appear and disappear, like mirages in the desert. – physorg