“Warning: A volcanic eruption started north of Sylingarfell,” the Met Office said on its website.
The previous eruption, which began on January 14, lasted for approximately two days. In January, lava flowed towards the outskirts of the Grindavik fishing town, prompting the evacuation of its nearly 4,000 residents. Some houses were even set on fire. It remains uncertain whether the current eruption will impact Grindavik.
In an effort to protect homes and critical infrastructure, Icelandic authorities started constructing dykes in November. These dykes are designed to divert lava flows away from populated areas. Although the threat level of the volcanic system has been downgraded, local authorities have warned of potential further eruptions. This is due to the ongoing rise of land in the area caused by the accumulation of magma underground.
Iceland, a country roughly the size of the US state of Kentucky, is home to over 30 active volcanoes. This makes it a popular destination for volcano tourism, attracting thousands of thrill-seekers who are fascinated by this niche segment.
“Despite downgrading the volcanic system’s threat level, the local authorities have warned of further eruptions as land continues to rise in the area due to magma accumulating underground,” according to Icelandic authorities.