Okay I predicted this. Every year we get a news story usually around Halloween about a alleged haunted Titanic exhibit or something connected to Titanic (like a replica of the famous ship). Over at the Titanic Exhibition in Luxor (Las Vegas) reports of the supernatural are being reported in local press.
The Las Vegas Journal-Review reported that these alleged supernatural events include overhead music being turned off, strange orchestra, spectral voices calling names or giggling, and hair being tousled or unseen force grabbing at jackets. Now the person making many of these claims is Joe Zimmer, an artifacts specialist for the exhibition. He claims to be sober and telling the truth.
“I’ll say this a million times and on my deathbed, and maybe come back and say it after my death: I would not lie to you,” Zimmer says. “What I’m asking you is to keep an open mind. Some of the docents and even guests have had some serious experiences here. Now, is it a trick of the mind or something else?
Time to call the Ghostbusters, sorry, professional ghost hunters. These are the people who walk around with equipment that will detect the presence of a ghost. The journalist accompanied by Tina Carlson and Nancy Riggs (director and co-director respectively) of the Las Vegas Society of Supernatural Investigations decided to explore the exhibit after hours one night. They toured the exhibit and places where strange or spooky things have been reported, like the replica of the grand staircase where a figure dressed in black has been spotted.
Another is a picture of J. Bruce Ismay, which apparently fell off the wall by itself (security cameras showed it falling off with no one touching it). So the journalists and the ghost hunters walked around. A security alarm goes off! The alarm near the Ismay picture has been tripped! It is a motion sensor on glass display case. Then later in the hallway of the third class bunks footsteps are heard coming towards them. A check of the room shows no one there!
The emf detectors went off but it may have been the electronics all over the place giving them false readings. So the ghost tour ended with not much except the motion sensor going off and strange footsteps. No real proof but lets review what we do know for certain.
1) The falling picture
Putting aside spectral hands doing it, is there another plausible explanation for a picture suddenly coming off a wall? Vibrations can cause it if the fitting is not tight. I have seen this happen when something causes a major vibration (lots of people moving about, a truck or household appliance) that shakes it enough something to fall off a shelf or wall.The fact the security cameras saw no one suggests this a possibility. My guess is that the picture was not quite secure and vibrations (which can come from a distance and not be readily apparent) likely caused it to fall.
2) The Motion Detector
These are temperamental devices but models vary as does quality. Many things can set them off but if they are set to only go off when someone breaks the glass (or I suppose leans too hard on it). My first act is not to assume supernatural but test the equipment. if it is going off when no one is breaking or touching the glass, it likely is a malfunction. It could be a number of things from wiring going bed to the sensor being temperamental requiring adjustment. How would a ghost set it off and humans not? If people just walked by and then suddenly it goes off, that does not mean a ghost did it. That sounds like a vibration (that word again) the alarm picked up and sensed might be a problem. At any rate the alarm needs to be examined by an electrician to determine what the problem might be.
This is more common than realized. Sometimes we here footsteps only to learn no one is there. For instance you are inside a building and you hear what seems like footsteps going up the stairs nearby. But no one is there! However outside are stairs and when someone walks up and down they sound like someone is walking on the stairs inside. Long time ago I was in the basement of a home watching television. I distinctly heard what I thought were footsteps above. Even the dog woofed a bit. Nothing was there though so what caused the sound of footsteps! Contracting floorboards. It was a cold night (below freezing) and the wood was constricting and as it did, caused those sounds.
So what did they hear that night? One possibility is they did hear footsteps but actually was someplace nearby. It only sounded like it was coming towards them. A simple experiment would confirm this hypothesis. Another possibility is fooling ourselves. We are so keyed up to experience something supernatural our brain latches on to something but it did no really happen.
Of course these days one has to suspect trickery as well. Too often clever pranksters can cause things to happen, like things appearing to fly off shelves as examples of poltergeists. There are many ways we can be fooled. Like the infamous Amityville Horror where it was simply all made up (virtually none of the things in the book or movie ever happened)by a defense attorney in cahoots with the Lutzes. Causing a chandelier to swing is not difficult with the right tools. Just ask Pen & Teller.
So if you are planning a trip to a Titanic Exhibition and worried ghosts might be about, do not worry yourself. The only ghosts you are likely to meet will be living ones dressed as people back then or the famous Captain Smith.
Las Vegas Review – Journal,Tours Explore Haunting Of Titanic Exhibit At Luxor, 21 Oct 2012