The Guardian was the first article I read that pondered whether the Los Roques islands are the new Bermuda Triangle. The article was written after Vittorio Missoni’s plane disappeared on January 4, 2013. I’m not into fashion so I don’t know who Vittorio Missoni is, but apparently he’s a big wig fashion designer. He boarded a plane in the Los Roques islands that disappeared soon after takeoff.
Which apparently happens a fair amount, maybe more than it should. The Los Roques archipelago consists of about 350 islands, cays, and islets that’s near Caracas, Venezuela in the Caribbean Sea. Apparently locals blame the “Los Roques Curse” whenever planes, boats and ships go missing in this area.
However, not all of the mysterious disappearances are thought to be paranormal. Pirates are known to roam these waters.
That doesn’t necessarily account for missing planes, though. That’s often chalked up to pilot error.
Here’s an interesting part from The Guardian’s article with some specifics about Los Roques and why it’s developing a Bermuda Triangle kind of reputation:
Since the mid-90s, there have been at least 15 reported incidents in which small aircraft have either crashed, disappeared or declared emergencies while travelling through the area. In 2008, 14 people were killed when a plane making the same journey as Missoni’s crashed into the sea. No wreckage was ever found and only one body was recovered….
Such mysteries are, of course, fodder to those with a conspiratorial mind. Other areas that have become renowned for unexplained disappearances include the Formosa Triangle, the Michigan Triangle, the Sargasso Sea, and the Devil’s Sea off Japan.
So is Los Roques the next Bermuda Triangle? There’s no telling. Maybe it’s developing into its baby sister? After all, Puerto Rico, one of the points of the BT, is just up the way.
Another interesting thing to note is that there is another side to the coin. (There always is after all.) Not everyone believes in the Bermuda Triangle or even the Los Roques Curse or any of the other places deemed to suffer from mysteriously disappearing crafts and vessels.
But Nick Wall, editor of Pilot, says pilots are a pragmatic, rational lot who don’t get distracted by talk of triangles and curses: “There’s always some explanation for these things – even if it takes many years to uncover the answer. Pilots prefer to concentrate on the things that genuinely will help them live longer such as fuel gauges, weather reports and engine inspections. They are increasingly aware of previously unknown meteorological phenomena such as coastal wind shearing and mountain waves, which can cause sudden turbulence. But it is too early to know for sure what caused this latest incident.”
~From “Are the Los Roques islands the new Bermuda Triangle?”in The Guardian
And here’s a skeptics perspective on the Bermuda Triangle:
And yet, according to the United States Coast Guard, the Bermuda Triangle is much ado about nothing.
“The Coast Guard does not recognize the existence of the so-called Bermuda Triangle as a geographic area of specific hazard to ships or planes,” the Coast Guard says on its website. “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 were the result of anything other than physical causes. No extraordinary factors have ever been identified.”
Writing in Skeptoid.com, Brian Dunning says that “transportation losses inside the Bermuda Triangle do not occur at a rate higher than anywhere else, and the number of losses that are unexplained is also not any higher. Statistically speaking, there is no Bermuda Triangle.”
~From “Vittorio Missoni’s Disappearance Gives Rise To New Fears Of Bermuda Triangles Worldwide” in The Huff Post
So whether there’s a curse in Los Roques or it’s about on par for missing boats and planes might depend on which side of the coin you see. One thing’s for sure: The Los Roques archipelago is growing as a tourist destination. Especially for ecotourism. Thanks to its warm waters and coral reef, it’s also popular with scuba divers and fisherman.
All I know is it looks beautiful and like a good place to snorkel, which I love. I’d brave the Curse to check out all the flora and fauna the Los Roques archipelago has to offer. What about you?