Iceland declares a state of emergency due to a stunning volcanic eruption (video)

Iceland declares a state of emergency due to a stunning volcanic eruption (video)
This photo released by the Icelandic Coast Guard on March 16, 2024, shows clouds of smoke and lava rising from a new fissure, during a monitoring flight above a new volcanic eruption outside the evacuated town of Grindavik, in western Iceland. (Photo by Bulletin/Icelandic Coast Guard/AFP)

Police in Iceland declared a state of emergency late Saturday when a new volcanic fissure on the Reykjanes Peninsula began spewing lava, the fourth eruption since December.

The eruption was reported by the Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO), which released live images of the bright flow of magma and smoke from the volcano.

The Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management announced that a helicopter was being sent to locate the new fissure, and the police also declared a state of emergency due to the eruption.

According to the International Maritime Organization, it occurred near the same point as a previous eruption, on February 8. He added that the lava appeared to be flowing south, where dikes had been installed to protect the fishing town of Grindavik.

This photo released by the Icelandic Coast Guard on March 16, 2024, shows clouds of smoke and lava rising from a new fissure, during a monitoring flight above a new volcanic eruption outside the evacuated town of Grindavik, in western Iceland. (Photo by Bulletin/Icelandic Coast Guard/AFP)

The IMO said magma also flowed westward, as it did on February 8, and the size of the fissure was estimated at 2.9 kilometers.

The agency said on Friday that there is an accumulation of magma in the ground “which could lead to the eruption of new magma and possibly a volcanic eruption” which could come “with little warning.”

Local media reported that the famous Blue Lagoon geothermal resort was evacuated, as was the town of Grindavik.

Grindavík's population of about 4,000 were evacuated due to the volcanic eruption that occurred on 11 November and were only able to return to their homes on 19 February.

Volcanic eruptions on the Reykjanes Peninsula have raised concerns about the Svartsingi power station, which supplies about 30,000 people in the region with electricity and water.

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The factory was evacuated and operated remotely since the first explosions in the area.

Iceland has about 33 active volcanic systems, the largest number in Europe.

France Press agency

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