Not expecting a long eruption at Grimsvotn

Rikke Pedersen, director of the Nordic Volcanological Centre Institute of Sciences, does not expect that the current volcanic eruption in southeast Iceland will last long.

The Grimsvotn eruption is a lot more powerful than the last one in 2004, which lasted just five days.

RUV journalist Bogi Agustsson asked Pedersen whether she believes it is likely Grimsvotn will cause the sort of international travel chaos seen last year when Eyjafjallajokull erupted. “No, I doubt that at the moment given the current weather forecast,” She said. “Over the next days the wind direction looks alright for Europe and the ash is going west and north; although we don’t know exactly what will happen in the future.”

The height of the ash cloud is decreasing and aviation authorities and airlines are hoping it continues to get lower. Reports earlier today suggested that the intensity of the eruption itself is diminishing fast; and scientists are flying over the volcano now trying to determine whether or not that is true.

Meanwhile, life in most of Iceland continues unaffected — despite the impression given by some foreign media that people need to wear dust masks and stay indoors all over Iceland. In reality only 1,000 people live in the area currently affected and they are all receiving assistance from emergency crews.

(Photo: Oddur Sigurdsson // Geological Survey of Ireland)

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