Home News Iceland volcano erupts, spewing lava 150 feet into the air

Iceland volcano erupts, spewing lava 150 feet into the air


A volcano in southwestern Iceland erupted Wednesday for the fifth time since December, blasting the Sundhnjukar ridge with incredible force and sending lava 150 feet into the air.

The weather service received signs of a possible eruption about two hours before the 1 p.m. local time eruption in Grindavik, the weather office said, and the civil protection agency immediately urged visitors to the Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa in one of Iceland’s most popular tourist destinations, to evacuate.

“Evacuate, evacuate!” a text message was sent to nearly 800 guests staying at the Blue Lagoon and surrounding hotels. The civil defense alarm installed in February sounded and tourists evacuated.

In a few minutes After the eruption, drivers on the highway heading to Keflavík Airport uploaded photos of the nearly two-mile-long fissure at Sundhnjukar. The huge plume of smoke was visible from the capital, Reykjavik.

Spokeswoman Helga Arnadottir said it was the fifth time an evacuation had been ordered since the volcano first reignited last year. Ms Arnadottir added that the evacuation went “as smoothly as before”. She said it took about half an hour for hotel guests to be evacuated.

Another 300 people had to be relocated from Grindavik, a fishing village that has been largely deserted since January after lava and earthquakes from previous eruptions destroyed parts of the town. The government has offered to buy all homes in Grindavik so residents can resettle elsewhere. Selected to sell.

Iceland’s tourism board urged people not to try to get close to the eruption, and was quick to point out that the country remains a safe destination. The island nation’s economy relies heavily on tourism; airlines and travel agencies reported Sales have fallen since the eruption It began in December. Keflavik Airport reported no disruptions to flights on Wednesday.

Although this eruption caused little warning, scientists had predicted another one following the last one three weeks ago.

Magnus Gudmundsson, one of the first volcanologists to fly over the site, told The New York Times that the fissure at Sandniuka appeared to have widened. By Wednesday evening, the lava had reached barriers around Grindavik that were set up to divert the lava flow away from the town.

“We are seeing widening of the fissures and large lava flows heading south towards Grindavik,” Mr Gudmundsson said. Part of the main road was destroyed. Mr Gudmundsson added that the volcano had produced 2.1 square miles of lava, “which is a considerable amount.”

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