The Bermuda Triangle has long been a hot button topic for those who believe in the supernatural. Proponents for the myth argue that the area, which is said to span between Bermuda, Puerto Rico and Florida, is subject to strange forces that have caused hundreds of ships and planes to mysteriously vanish throughout history.
But a new assessment spearheaded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has now officially — finally — debunked the myth once and for all, reports the Sun Sentinel. According to the unambiguous NOAA report, the Bermuda Triangle is nothing more than a bunch of malarkey.
The assessment, which is based on extensive data collected by the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard, shows that there is nothing unusual about any disappearances that have occurred in the foreboding region.
"There is no evidence that mysterious disappearances occur with any greater frequency in the Bermuda Triangle than in any other large, well-traveled area of the ocean," the agency stated recently on its website.
The report is a breath of fresh air for skeptics who have long rolled their eyes at outlandish theories posited about the Bermuda Triangle. Those theories involve everything from alien abductions to inter-dimensional worm holes to the lost city of Atlantis.
Instead, NOAA claims, the strange disappearances reported in the region are more likely the result of the bad weather and rough seas. The area is frequently visited by hurricanes and tropical storms, for instance. The Bermuda Triangle is also intersected by the Gulf Stream, a fast-moving current that runs parallel to the U.S. East Coast, which can cause "rapid, sometimes violent, changes in weather." This, combined with the fact that there are countless shallow water regions in the area, can occasionally provide a perilous environment for ships.
Even with these factors taken into consideration, though, the Bermuda Triangle is still not recognized as an unusually treacherous region.
"In a review of many aircraft and vessel losses in the area over the years, there has been nothing discovered that would indicate that casualties [in the region] were the result of anything other than physical causes."
Neither the U.S. Navy or the Coast Guard have any official maps that delineate the boundaries of a dangerous area there, and the U.S. Board of Geographic Names does not see any need to recognize the Bermuda Triangle as an official name.
"The ocean has always been a mysterious place to humans, and when foul weather or poor navigation is involved, it can be a very deadly place," the NOAA said. "This is true all over the world."
"The combined forces of nature and human fallibility outdo even the most incredulous science fiction."
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