Listening to NPR news this morning, I heard of a break in an underwater fiber-optic cable between Europe and the Middle East, just off the coast of Alexandria in "240 mile deep water."
It struck me as odd that this was such a minor news item. After all, the previous record for deepest water on earth was only seven miles (held by Challenger Deep, off the Marianas Islands.) NPR has just increased the deepest water on earth by 3328%, an astonishing accomplishment.
I am not sure what the message was supposed to be. Perhaps the water was 0.24 miles deep? The break was 240 miles from Alexandria? There are a great many plausible options.
To anyone to whom numbers communicate anything "240 mile deep water"just off shore in the relatively shallow Mediterranean should be instantly absurd. Unfortunately, basic competence in subjects such as science and math are not expected of those in the news business. If I were king...