Bermuda Triangle investigation rekindles mystery, prompts House resolution
Now a new NBC News investigation marking the 60th anniversary of Flight 19's disappearance in the Bermuda Triangle is rekindling speculation on what happened that day. The anniversary also prompted a resolution in Congress by Rep. Clay Shaw, R-Fort Lauderdale, to commemorate the mission's 27 vanished pilots and crewmembers.
The Bermuda Triangle (sometimes known as Devil's Triangle) is a 1.5-million-square-mile (4,000,000 km) area of ocean roughly defined by Bermuda, Puerto Rico, and the southern tip of Florida. Some believe it is a paranormal site in which the laws of physics are violated or altered.It is said that within this area a number of ships and planes have disappeared under highly unusual circumstances. The United States Coast Guard and others disagree with the assessment of paranormal activity, arguing that the number of incidents involving lost ships and planes is no larger than that of any other heavily traveled region of the world.
The tale of Flight 19 started on December 5th, 1945. Five Avenger torpedo bombers lifted into the air from the Navel Air Station at Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at 2:10 in the afternoon. It was a routine practice mission and the flight was composed of all students except for the Commander, a Lt. Charles Taylor.
The mission called for Taylor and his group of 13 men to fly due east 56 miles to Hens and Chicken Shoals to conduct practice bombing runs. When they had completed that objective, the flight plan called for them to fly an additional 67 miles east, then turn north for 73 miles and finally straight back to base, a distance of 120 miles. This course would take them on a triangular path over the sea.
About an hour and a half after the flight had left, a Lt. Robert Cox picked up a radio transmission from Taylor. Taylor indicated that his compasses were not working, but he believed himself to be somewhere over the Florida Keys (the Keys are a long chain of islands south of the Florida mainland). Cox urged him to fly north, toward Miami, if Taylor was sure the flight was over the Keys.
Planes today have a number of ways that they can check their current position including listening to a set of GPS (Global Positioning Satellites) in orbit around the Earth. It is almost impossible for a pilot to get lost if he has the right equipment and uses it properly.