What are icebergs?

Icebergs are large, floating chunks of ice that have broken off from glaciers,  to drift about in the ocean.  Icebergs are the broken-off end of glaciers that tumble into the water and drift out into the sea.  The biggest are huge, floating blocks of ice that weigh several million tons.  Some are a mile or more across and tower hundreds of feet above the surface.

Big Blocks of Ice

An iceberg floating in the sea doesn’t look nearly as big as it really is.  About seven-eighths of it is below the water, out of sight.  Icebergs are made up of fresh water ice, since they are formed on land from snowfalls.  Their white color is caused by tiny bubbles of air trapped in the ice.

Ocean currents often carry icebergs hundreds of mile out to sea before they melt and finally disappear.

In 1912, a large ocean liner, the Titanic, struck an iceberg in the North Atlantic Ocean and sand, with a great loss of life.  Since that time, the United States Coast Guard has patrolled the North Atlantic shipping lanes, warning ships of the location of large icebergs.

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