Go Back Report # 415
07-27-1970

07-27-1970

Note: Date is based on the date an object was seen to fly out of the water. However I feel that the background regarding the fleeting moment of flight is interesting as well.          

Note: According to an e-mail received from Mr. Ballester Olmos , he has deleted this case from his original catalog of Spanish UFO cases. He feels that the object could be: “any type of container or tank. Nothing calls for a serious relationship of this curious finding with the UFO phenomenon”.

       I have decided to continue carrying it as something was seen to come out of the water and it might have a relationship with future cases. C.F.    

UNUSUAL UNDERWATER OBJECT

by Vicente-Juan Ballester Olmos

       This is a report compiled for CEONI (Circulo de Estudios Sobre Objetos No Identificados) of Valencia, Spain, by its President, our contributor. Translation from the Spanish by Gordon Creighton.          

       At about 1.00 p.m. on Sunday, July 26, 1970, a 24-year-old aqualung diver was engaged in hunting fish off Alcocebre (Castellón) at a spot (40° 14' 45" North Latitude, 3° 58' 40" East Longitude) just off the urban settlement of "Las Fuentes". The water was some 8 to 10 metres deep and the spot was some 60 or 70 metres from the shore-line.   

Discovery of the object

       The sea-bed at this particular region is of very fine sand with softly eroded rock outcroppings. As is the usual practice in underwater fishing in Spain, the man was using aqualung containers of compressed air.         



The underwater object in detail       

      Suddenly, at some distance from him, he noticed, on the sea-bed, a strange metallic object. It was sticking up over the top of a rocky outcropping. So he went nearer to observe it, and he found that, lying between two of the outcrops which were about 9 metres apart, there was a metallic object sunk about 8 inches or so into the sand. Its length was about 7 metres, its width about 3 metres, and one of its ends was slightly conical. The other end, which was slightly convex, was pointed out to sea. Near the conical end, and on the upper part of the object, there was a break in the continuity, about 1 centimetre wide and 2 centimetres deep, running right round the cylinder, enclosing a circular area about 1 metre in diameter. There was a similar groove running round the convex end.         



The submarine capsule between two fingers of rock

(sectional view)

      The surface of the cylinder was metallic, polished, of a colour resembling the colour of dull stainless steel. It had no rivets or anything resembling rivets and it did not look as though it had been under the water very long, for there were no calcareous deposits on it, no uneven nesses, nor was it rusted at all. He estimated that, since it was so absolutely clean and lacking incrustations, it could not have been there even as much as a week.

       He tested and found that it was not magnetic, for when he put his knife (magnetised, as is the usual practice) against it, there was no magnetic effect. Then he tried to scratch the surface of the object with the knife, but neither knife nor cylinder showed any mark from the scratching.

       He used his underwater gun to measure the cylinder.

       When we were talking to the diver about the affair we discussed the question of whether it could have been a container of dumped industrial or radioactive waste.

       He replied that he was unable to say yes or no to the idea since he had no knowledge of such matters, but nevertheless he repeated, emphatically, that it would have needed "a tremendous storm" to have shifted it from the particular place where it was on the sea-bed, and there had been a total absence of any such storm over the period in question. Furthermore the gradient of the sea-bed at that particular place is minimal or indeed to all intents and purposes nil, which suggests precisely how difficult it would have been for the thing to have shifted by itself.          



Location of object on sea bed in relation to coast  (lateral view)

       The young diver attempted in vain to move the object and he dwelt on the fact that in water it is almost impossible to exert force or pressure, even with a point of support. In fact he used as his support a rock (on the nearer of the two outcroppings) but it had no effect on the object.

       He drew our attention also to the fact that no sound was given off by the object and that, apart from what has been recorded above, it had no other notable features.

       The witness was quite unable to say how long he had remained under water examining the object. He reminded us that "down below" one completely loses the notion of "time" and he regrets that he cannot furnish us with this piece of information.  

A strange "something" seen from boat

       At about 3.00 a.m. on the following morning, the witness was out in a small rowing-boat in the same area, just off-shore opposite the "Las Fuentes" urban settlement, with a lady friend a German girl aged about 20, who was on a camping holiday in Spain with another girl. Suddenly the German girl noticed something leaving the water.

       When we questioned the witness about this incident in the boat with the German girl, he told us that the course of events was more or less as follows:

       She (in broken Spanish, but quite comprehensible):

       "Something came out over there!"

       He: "It must have been a fish." She: "No! No!"

       He (again): "It was a fish."

       She: "No! No! It wasn't a fish. It was bigger than that."

       He then looks to where she was pointing (on the surface of the water), and she says: "Up, above." But he sees nothing. He estimates that it would have been about a little more than 10 seconds between her first words and the time when he looked over to where she was pointing. Besides seeing nothing, he heard no sound and saw no luminosity. And, although the direction in which she was pointing (to a distance of some 200 or 300 metres from the boat) was precisely the area where, on the morning of the previous day, he had found the strange cylindrical object, he attributed no importance to this fact at the time.          



Location of object on sea bed in relation to coast (plan view)       

       Discussing this point with us, the witness remarked that, at the time, whatever it was the girl had seen seemed to him to have been of little interest, for she said nothing more about it afterwards, had not continued to watch for a long time, and had not been alarmed at all. He, for his part, had not asked her for any further details, inasmuch as he did not think that what she had seen was anything remarkable.

       The many questions which arise in our minds now about this episode cannot be answered because it is not possible to contact the girl. Her name is not known, nor the name of her home town in Germany, nor anything else about her. So the manner in which she saw the (presumed) object vanishing from sight, and the details of the object will probably remain only in the memory of the girl. Let us remember, however, that whatever it was that she saw, she too did not attribute overmuch importance to the incident; indeed practically none. 

Object gone

       At 9.00 that same morning (Monday) the young diver went down again, out of pure curiosity, to take another look at the strange object, and it will be appreciated that his surprise was enormous when, arriving at the precise spot where it had been, he perceived that it was no longer there.

       The witness, who has been skin-diving for six years, has known the whole area thoroughly for even more years than that, since it is the place where his family have traditionally spent their summer holidays. But, in order to make absolutely sure that he was not mistaken, he explored all the rocky outcrops along that part of the coast for a further hour, with no results. Then, and only then, did he begin to link the cylinder and its disappearance with what his friend the German girl had seen.      

       Since that date he has dived again at the same place several times and always without finding any trace of the object, and he again emphasises that the area is one very well known to him, so there can be no possibility of his being mistaken as to where it was, or being at fault in his bearings. We for our part would emphasise the fact that he is a very experienced diver.

       When we asked him about the time of the day when, after his night trip in the boat he was back in the sea and diving again, we expressed our astonishment that he must have slept so few hours that night. He smiled broadly and replied that this is very common with under-water divers. Very often these young fellows spend a whole night dancing in some town near the coast and then, at six in the morning, without having slept at all, or perhaps having merely lain down for a couple of hours, they take their gear and go off down to the sea again. Such is their passion for this marine sport, we repeat, that a sleepless night is something very, very normal for them.

       The witness, who at the present time is employed as a car salesman, is a draughtsman, unmarried, and of the Roman Catholic faith. Never before had he seen any strange object or strange phenomenon, either aerial or aquatic. He has no particular interest in such matters as UFOs, science fiction, or suchlike, and has never read any book about them. He has of course seen the occasional UFO report in a paper or a magazine, as is normal.

       The original CEONI report bears the full signature, name and surnames, of the witness, in support of the authenticity of his statement, but he has asked for a certain amount of discretion to be used, and we have decided not to publish his name.

       The enquiries conducted in this case by the CEONI members were as follows:  

    1. At a personal interview with V-J. Ballester, arising out of the latter's lecture, at the Alejandro Salzar High School, on UFO landings in the Iberian Peninsula· The witness came to the lecture, having seen an announcement about it in the press.

    2. At an investigatory interview with the witness by various CEONI members, in April 1971, Don J. Cezón of the C.E.I., Madrid, also being present.

    3. At a final interview, at CEONI Headquarters, in May 1971, at which the finishing touches were given on various points and details that had arisen in the course of our discussions of the case.   

The sighting as a Type I, Class B UFO report

       Reports of unidentified flying objects associated with large expanses of water--oceans, lakes, rivers--are not uncommon in our subject. One book published recently (Ivan T. Sanderson: Invisible Residents. World Publishing Co., New York and Cleveland, 1970) is devoted entirely to the problem of UFOs leaving or entering the seas, which is a good indication of the proportion of cases of this type within the general UFO Phenomenon. Whenever the investigator possesses sufficient details to be able to eliminate every category of known conventional identification (meteorite, break-up or decay of man-made artefact, balloon, and so on) sightings of this kind are catalogued under the category of UFO Landings, since this type of sighting meets the requirements laid down for that category·           

       In the Catalogue of Spanish Type- 1 Reports currently being published as part of the list of world-wide sightings which is kept up-to-date by Dr. Jacques Vallée (whose enormous contributions and efforts are a source of such great encouragement), we have noted several examples of this UFO activity in relation to the sea. The most clear and precise of these cases include the following: Camarasa (Lérida), April 14, 1950; Santoña (Santander), September 1953; La Escala (Gerona), September 21, 1968; and Cabo Cope (Murcia), October 11, 1969. The interested reader will find these items in a summarised version listed individually in the Hundred Landing Cases Reported and Studied for the Iberian Peninsula (Ballester and Vallée, 1971. See FSR Special Issue No. 4, UFOs In Two Worlds, Cases Nos. 5, 8, 59 and 94).          

       In the particular case of the object at Alcocebre with which the present article deals, we are confronted with a cylindrically-shaped submarine object bearing no identification marks, in circumstances where the state of the sea and the water were such that no object of such a size and weight, resting on the sea-bed, could possibly have moved by itself. Secondly, we have a poorish visual sighting over the surface of the sea, with a low-level strangeness-index, a sighting which, while it might not have appeared of any importance at the time, immediately becomes a fact of significance and worthy of mention in the light of the subsequent discovery of the sudden disappearance of the mysterious object from the sea-bed. These features of the case have prompted us to include the incident in our listing of Type 1 UFO Reports. 

       As regards the lack of markings on the mystery object, we know that even every secret type of man-made device employed in our oceans bears signs, letters, or wording indicating its origin. An example was the object recently found in the Mediterranean by a Spanish fishing-boat.   

       It is our intention to follow up on this case. In particular, we shall secure all possible information regarding the types of receptacles most commonly designed for containing industrial or radioactive waste materials, although, for the reasons just adduced above. we feel that this particular hypothesis of the industrial or radioactive waste container is a weak one. However, we shall be glad to receive from readers of FSR their suggestions as to any possible explanation for this strange "deposit", and we hope that they will be published in these pages.                       

This reference: Flying Saucer Review Case Histories, Supplement #6, August 1971, pp. 5-7.

UFOCAT PRN - 73995 [DOS: 07-26-1970]

UFOCAT URN – 073995 Flying Saucer Review Case Histories, Supplement #6, August 1971,

                                        pp. 5-7. (Above)

UFOCAT URN – 078312 Catalog of 200 Type-1 UFO Events in Spain and Portugal by Ballester
                                       Olmos Vicente-Juan, #118 © CUFOS 1976.
UFOCAT URN – 176770 *U* UFO Computer Database by Larry Hatch, # XXXXXX © 2002     

UFOCAT PRN - 73996[DOS: 07-27-1970]

UFOCAT URN – 073996 Flying Saucer Review Case Histories, Supplement #6, August 1971,

                                         pp. 6-7. (Above)     

Europe – Spain, Castellón

Alcocebre         Latitude 40-15 N, Longitude 0-17 W  (D-M) [Alcocéber]

Las Fuentes     Latitude 39-00 N, Longitude 1-19 W

Reference: Spain and Andorra gazetteer, Prepared in the Office of Geography, Department of the Interior, Washington, D.C., April 1961      

UFO Location (UFOCAT) Latitude 40.25 N, Longitude 0.27 E (D.%)

                                      Latitude 40.27 N, Longitude 0.28 E [URN 176770]   


 



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