The Romblon Triangle: Philippine’s own version of the famous Bermuda Triangle

The Bermuda triangle has been give various names all throughout history but one of its most prominent title is being the so-called “Devil’s triangle.” For as long as anyone could remember, numerous cases of sinking ships have been recorded in the area with no specific reason as to why these ships sank and up to this day still remains a mystery.

Did you know that in the Philippines, there is also an area in the ocean which seafarers try so hard to avoid. That is, the so called “Romblon Triangle.”

The Romblon Triangle is a region in the central seas of the Philippines which lies near the province of Romblon. The boundaries of the triangle cover the entire area of northern Romblon province and its endpoints lie on the municipality of Concepcion in between the Islands of Dos Hermanas and Sibuyan.

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In this specific area, there were several cases of mysterious ship disappearances and unexplainable sinking of vessels. Because of these cases recorded in the area, it is now even dubbed as the Philippine’s version of the ‘Bermuda Triangle’. In fact, a total of 40 maritime incidents have occurred in the area since the early 80’s.

Here are a few examples of the mysterious disappearances that occured in the area in the past years:

The M/V Doña Paz and M/T Vector Tragedy

On December 20, 1987, M/V Doña Paz (owner: Sulpicio Lines) collided with M/T Vector (owner: Vector Shipping) in Tablas Strait near Marinduque. It has an estimated death toll of more than 4,000 people making it the deadliest peacetime maritime disaster in 20th century. It even got the name Asia’s Titanic.

The M/S Don Juan Tragedy

Around 1 pm of April 22, 1980, a jam-packed M/S Don Juan of Negros Navigation (NN) carrying at least 1,000 passengers, left Pier 2 at the Manila North Harbor. It was bound for Bacolod City.[6] It was famous for being one of the fastest passenger ship travelling only 18 to 19 hours from Manila to Bacolod, which for some other ships, they take 1 whole day to travel the same.
At 10:30pm, an oil tanker M/T Tacloban crashed on Don Juan which resulted to a large hole in the lower deck. Not too long, the ship sunk.

The M/V Princess of the Stars Tragedy

The M/V Princess of the Stars is a Filipino ferry owned by Sulpicio Lines. It capsized in the coastline of San Fernardo, Romblon on June 21, 2008. It travels in the midst of Typhoon Frank (international name Typhoon FengShen). The ship travels from Manila heading to Cebu. It was permitted to sail because they thought, the ship was too large to stay afloat even there’s a typhoon. Unexpectedly, the typhoon changed its course putting the ship in danger.

On their side, the Philippine coast guard explained that the disasters occurring in the area are isolated incidents and are solely caused by natural phenomena such as high tides and heavy typhoons.

People residing near the Romblon triangle also claims that there were sightings of a ‘ghost ship’ in the area. The so called ‘Don Juan’ ship is said to be a golden vessel which was used by merchants to store their gold bars back in the ancient times.

Meanwhile, the Philippines Coast guard repeatedly nullified these claims by explaining that the waters from the Pacific Ocean and the West Philippine Sea intersect in the Tablas Strait which forms a riptide and causes big waves which makes the area extra dangerous for ships.

Source: Philippine Urban Legend