May 20, 2024


Iceland has declared a state of emergency, with police officers urging residents to evacuate the coastal city of Grindavík following an intense wave of earthquakes within the southwest of the nation linked to a attainable volcanic eruption.

Almost 800 quakes had been recorded between midnight and a couple of p.m. on Friday, with the shallowest at a depth of 3-3.5 kilometers (1.86-2.18 miles), in line with the Icelandic Meteorological Workplace.

In statements Friday, Iceland’s Civil Safety Company mentioned a magma tunnel that’s forming might attain Grindavík. However as of Friday night, the Icelandic authority mentioned it has been unattainable to inform if and the place the magma would possibly break by to the floor.

“Earthquakes might turn into greater than those who have already occurred, and this sequence of occasions might result in an eruption. Nevertheless, there are nonetheless no indicators that the magma is nearing the floor. Its progress is being intently monitored,” the Civil Safety Company mentioned.

Magma is a combination of molten and semi-molten rock discovered beneath the floor of the Earth that may trigger an eruption when it finds its strategy to the floor, changing into lava.

Authorities urged residents to evacuate calmly and emphasised that there isn’t a imminent hazard.

“We need to reiterate that residents MUST evacuate their houses and depart the city. However we additionally need to reiterate that this isn’t an emergency evacuation, there may be loads of time to arrange, safe issues and drive out of city calmly,” the Civil Safety Company mentioned.

“It’s clear that we’re coping with occasions that we Icelanders haven’t skilled earlier than, not less than not for the reason that eruption in Vestmannaeyjar. We confronted that collectively, we’ll face this collectively and we won’t lose coronary heart,”  the Civil Safety Company added.

The US Embassy in Iceland issued a volcano alert, warning concerning the elevated indicators of volcanic exercise.

“If an eruption happens, observe the directions of Icelandic authorities. Volcanic hazards might embrace lava, poisonous gases, and heavy smoke from fires ignited by lava,” it mentioned.

The world-famous Blue Lagoon thermal pool within the space has already closed as a result of ongoing seismic exercise.

Since 2021, there was an eruption nearly each 12 months and the newest one happened in July south of Iceland’s capital Reykjavik.

Iceland sits on a tectonic plate boundary that frequently splits aside, pushing North America and Eurasia away from one another alongside the road of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. It’s residence to 32 energetic volcanoes.

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