From Iceland — Storm Over Iceland: Closed Roads, Cancelled Flights, Homes Evacuated

Storm Over Iceland: Closed Roads, Cancelled Flights, Homes Evacuated

Published February 22, 2022

Photo by
Icelandic Met Office

While the red alert issued for southwest Iceland due to a violent storm system has been downgraded to an orange alert, the storm has wreaked havoc across the country, and travel is absolutely out of the question for much of the day today.

We have been having some awful weather here as of late, so we’re specially grateful for our comfy traditional lopapeysa sweaters, the beautiful woolen garments which have been keeping Icelanders warm for generations. They’re available in our shop, and ours are hand-knitted right here in Iceland.

All flights to and from Keflavík International Airport have been either cancelled or delayed today, in effect until this evening at the soonest. If you have a flight booked during this time, or are expecting someone on said flight, do check with your airline for more information.

Many roads in Iceland are closed today as well, including the route south from Reykjavík to Hveragerði and beyond. Check with Road.is before getting behind the wheel, and avoid driving anywhere until this evening, for the sake of your own safety. Over a hundred people are currently stuck in their cars on South Iceland roads; readers would do well to not add to the traffic jam or endanger themselves.

Hveragerði, like many parts of Iceland, has been hit hard by the storm, so much so that the Hamarshöllin sports hall was stripped of its roof in the winds.

Power outages have been reported across the country, and in the Westfjords, at least 28 people have been evacuated from their homes due to the danger of an impending avalanche there.

As might be expected, the rescue squad has had its work cut out for them, and have been dispatched to answer some 70 calls in the past 24 hours now. Most of these calls have been in response to people stuck in their cars, but they also rescued two young men from being swept out into Keflavík harbour.

As the situation stands now, heavy rain and winds ranging from 20 to 28 metres per second will continue to pour over southwest and west Iceland through the morning, only “calming down” to 15 to 23 metres per second as the afternoon nears. These conditions are expected to continue until at least 18:00, so avoid going anywhere until this time. As always, check with SafeTravel.is for all the latest on weather and road conditions across the country.

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