volcano status

23.08.2014 – Bardarbunga – Information from The Icelandic National Coordination Media Centre

Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 16.43.27Information from The Icelandic National Coordination Media Centre – National Commissioner of the Icelandic Police

  • A small lava-eruption has been detected under the Dyngjujökull glacier.
  • The Icelandic Coast Guard airplane TF-SIF is flying over the area with representatives from the Civil Protection and  experts from the Icelandic Met Office and the Institute of Earth Sciences. Data from the equipment on board is expected later today.
  • Data from radars and webcameras are being received, showing no signs of changes at the surface.
  • The estimate is that 150-400 meters of ice  is above the area.
  • The aviation color code for the Bárðarbunga volcano has been changed from orange to red.

Scientists at the Icelandic Met Office believe that a small sub-glacial volcanic eruption has now started under the icecap of Dyngjujökull glacier in the Northern part of Vatnajökull glacier. Because of this the National Commissioner of the Icelandic Police has raised the alert phase to emergency phase.

At the same time the Met Office has raised the aviation color code from orange to red resulting in the air space above the eruption site being closed.

The eruption is considered a minor event at this point. Because of a pressure from the glacier cap it is uncertain whether the eruption will stay sub-glacial or not.

The Coast Guards aircraft, TF-SIF, is currently monitoring the area and there are no visible signs of a plume at this moment. Nothing indicates floods because of the eruption. At this stage measurements taken is based on a small event.

The Jökulsárgljúfur canyon has been closed and evacuation of tourists in that area and around Dettifoss waterfall has started. The situation at this stage does not call for evacuation of habitants in Kelduhverfi, Öxarfjördur and Núpasveit. People in those areas are encouraged to watch news closely and have their mobiles switched on at all times.

Neither Icelandair or WOW air have issued any travel alerts, for more information www.icelandair.us/travel-alerts and www.wowair.com

The National Coordination Media Centre Office e-mail  info@sst.is Tel. +354 570 2643 and +354 570 2644.