A rescue team was deployed yesterday to save four tourists who became stranded on an ice floe in Fjallsárlón glacier lagoon after it broke loose from the shore, RÚV reports. The four American tourists had apparently made themselves comfortable—having set up a table and four chairs to picnic on the ice—when a gust of wind suddenly caused the ice floe to break loose and drift into the water. Staff members from Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon located just west of Fjallsárlón were sent with a boat to bring the tourists back to land. By the time the first rescue boat arrived, the ice floe had drifted 10 metres from the shore. While one of the tourists had managed to jump to safety before the ice drifted too far from shore, the others stayed put and remained calm. Páll Sigurður Vignisson, a member of the search and rescue unit in Hornafjörður, was among the rescuers sent from Jökulsárlón. He expressed surprise at the tourists’ calmness and warned that it was not keeping with the danger they had unsuspectingly put themselves in, adding that ice floes are unpredictable and can capsize at any moment.
Recently resigned Minister of the Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir will likely not have to face a parliamentary hearing on the leaked memo scandal, due to her resignation, RÚV reports. Hanna Birna was due to appear in a live and publicly televised hearing to discuss her role in the leaked memo case, as well as answer to allegations that she may have tried to influence the course of an ongoing police investigation of her ministry by threatening former Commissioner of the Capital Area Police, Stefán Eiríksson. According Alþingi Office Manager Helgi Bernódusson, a minister is both politically responsible as well as legally responsible for
Every year, several dozen butchers commute from provincial New Zealand to rural Iceland – for just two months’ work, reports the BBC. As work commutes go, the journey takes some beating, roughly 22,300km (about 13,850 miles) each way. The roughly 30 butchers travel to Iceland for the lamb processing season, which begins each September. “My friends say ‘Iceland? What do you kill there – seals?’ Nah, they’ve got their own breed of sheep,” said Shawn Parkinson who has made the trip for the past seven years. “We’d be out of work if we stayed in New Zealand at this time
A 500 metre long ice cave is currently being tunnelled into Iceland’s Langjökull glacier. So far the crew have dug the cave’s entrance, roughly 200 metres into the glacier and are experimenting with how to light the tunnel. Plans are to turn the cave into a tourist destination where visitors can learn about glacial formations and potentially, even get married. “In the tunnel there’ll be a room,” said Sigurður Skarphéðinsson, CEO of the Ice Cave Iceland project. “We like to call it the multipurpose room and there, in cooperation with others, we’ll be able to offer people the chance to
Hardcore Icelandic Arsenal fan, Sigfríð Ingólfsdóttir, only ever wears Arsenal gear or Arsenal themed clothing, reports Vikudagur, except when she has to attend funerals. Sigfríð, 62, began following English football 30 years ago and first started supporting Arsenal after thinking the name of the team was pretty neat. She has since become one of Arsenal’s most dedicated fans in Iceland, has an “Arsenal Room” in her home, and is regularly stopped to discuss games. “I get stopped out on the street, people like to talk to me about Arsenal and football in general,” said Sigfríð. “Some of them are on
The MP5 submachine guns Iceland received from Norway will be sent back, the Icelandic Coast Guard has announced. According to the announcement, posted today on the Coast Guard’s website, the conclusion of talks with the Norwegian army yesterday and today led to the decision to return the guns, which have been held by toll authorities over the past few weeks. Customs officials held onto the guns on account of a dispute over whether the guns were a gift or a purchase. The Icelandic Coast Guard contends that “almost all the weapons in possession of the Icelandic Coast Guard (90%) have
Minister of the Interior, Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir, is expected to announce that she is stepping down today and will not return to parliament until the New Year, according to RÚV. Hanna Birna has been under a lot of scrutiny following the leak of incriminating and falsified information about Nigerion asylum seeker Tony Omos. She has maintained her innocence throughout the affair, even after her aide Gísli Freyr Valdórsson admitted to the leak. Despite the Independence party and PM Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson declaring their support of her, a lot of pressure has been on her to resign, including from the 1,000 people that