Bermuda Triangle mystery solved? Not so fast, says meteorologist

A fresh theory purports to have solved the dangerous mystery that has led to the disappearance of planes and boats in the notorious region known as the Bermuda Triangle.

While lovers of the paranormal and anomalous might enjoy discussing the idea, NBC meteorologist Kevin Corriveau finds it less than compelling.

The new argument stems from the Science Channel's "What on Earth?" series. With an ominous musical accompaniment, a pair of meteorologists share satellite imagery that show hexagonal-shaped clouds in the east side of the infamous area in the Atlantic Ocean. They believe these cloud configurations could be the cause of some of the mysteries plaguing the approximately 500,000 square mile "triangle" that connects Bermuda, Florida and Puerto Rico, earning the region its urba- legend status.

"These types of hexagonal shapes over the ocean are in essence, 'air bombs,''' Dr. Randy Cerveny of Arizona State University told the Science Channel. "They're formed by what are called microbursts. They're blasts of air that come down out of the bottom of the clouds and hit the ocean, and they create waves that can sometimes be massive in size once they start to interact with each other."

 

 

 

The pair compared the cloud patterns to those found in the North Sea in Europe. In that region, half a world away, the hexagon-shape can indicate these microbursts, which can cause sea level-winds that reach almost 100 mph and waves over 45 feet high.

Any plane or boat would struggle to avoid crashing in this kind of inclement weather.

Nevertheless, a theories' traction on the internet does not necessarily indicate merit.

You can't compare the weather patterns of two regions so geographically disparate, Corriveau said, noting that latitude plays a major role in the characteristics of clouds and weather.

"When I look at a hexagonal cloud shape in the Bahamas, this is not the cloud signature of what a microburst looks like," Corriveau explained. "You would normally have one large to extremely large thunderstorm that wouldn't have an opening in the middle."

Rather, the cause for the odd shapes could be due to the small islands of the Bahamas heating the air differently than the long coastline of Florida, creating erratic weather patterns.

To Corriveau, the comparison just doesn't track.

"I wouldn't say what we're seeing in the Bahamas is the exact same as in the North Sea," he added.

Unusual and paranormal claims surrounding the Bermuda Triangle allegedly stretch back to Christopher Columbus's first voyage to the New World in 1492.

The debate has continued over whether the danger of the region might be overstated ever since Vincent Gaddis, a writer who specialized in anomalous phenomena, first coined the name in a Feb. 1964 issue of the pulp magazine "Argosy." 


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