Hekla Rumbles, Authorities Alerted - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Hekla Rumbles, Authorities Alerted

Published October 9, 2019

Andie Fontaine
Photos by
Hansueli Krapf/Wikimedia Commons

Six tremors were recorded around the volcano Hekla last night, RÚV reports. While the tremors themselves were not particularly strong, an unusual amount of tremors in a very short amount of time raised reasonable concern.

As can be seen in a map of tremors in the region from the Icelandic Met Office, there was noticeable activity around Hekla last night. These tremors were all fairly small, measuring a magnitude of around 1 or 1.5.

Nonetheless, the Icelandic Met Office alerted both Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management as well as Isavia, the company which operates Keflavík International Airport.

Kristín Jónsdóttir, an expert in seismic activity at the Icelandic Met Office, told reporters that while Hekla shows some instability, scientists monitoring the volcano are not particularly worried. These latest measurements could, in fact, be attributed in part to more exacting instruments placed around the area in recent years, allowing experts to detect smaller and more frequent tremors than before.

Hekla is one of Iceland’s most active volcanos. It last erupted in 2000, and while there has been much speculation about when it will erupt again, earth scientists have repeatedly emphasised that it is impossible to predict exactly when a volcano may erupt. Fortunately, Iceland has a very elaborate and fast-acting early detection system for volcanos and earthquakes alike.

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