The eruption that started early in the morning of February 8 is now almost diminished, reports RÚV.
Einar Bessi Gestsson, a natural disaster expert at the Icelandic Met Office, says the end of the eruption is probably imminent. The eruption has subsided significantly and there has been no visible activity since eight o’clock this morning. “It is not excluded that there is still some lava flow beneath the lava field, so we will continue to monitor the next hours. But most likely – if this behaves similarly to the last eruptions in this area, in December and January – then this is coming to an end,” says Einar Bessi.
Work on restoring the water supply
On the day of the eruption, lava damaged the hot water pipes from the Svartsengi Power Plant by the Blue Lagoon, cutting off the hot water supply for the entire Reykjanes Peninsula. As hot water is used to heat nearly all the buildings on the peninsula, schools in the area have reported closures on Friday, along with swimming pools. The repair of the pipes is underway and residents are encouraged to use water sparingly. Sigvaldi Arnar Lárusson, the Chief of Police in Suðurnes, states that the night dedicated to repairing the water supply went well.
“The plan is to restore the hot water supply later tonight,” says Sigvaldi Arnar, but it may take up to two hours for the water to reach the houses. It is expected that houses will begin to warm up again late on Sunday night.
“People have been using energy sparingly and listening to what was requested. The system is holding up,” says Sigvaldi , encouraging people to continue using energy and heating sparingly.
There is still a lack of hot water in various areas of the Reykjanes peninsula and the Keflavík Airport reported issues with cold water, but it seems to be unrelated to the eruption.
Benedikt Ófeigsson, a geologist at the Icelandic Met Office, says that residents should expect volcanic eruptions at intervals of a month or so, or within the next few months.
“For the longer term, it’s very difficult to say, but for the shorter term, the next few seasons, months, then we are likely to continue seeing repeated magma intrusions and eruptions. As long as there is an open fissure in Svartsengi, we should expect it to continue like this,” he stated.
The Grindavíkurvegur road damaged by the lava yesterday is now deemed unusable for at least a couple of months. The Reykjavík Grapevine’s Jón Trausti Sigurðarson and Art Bicnick were among the few people allowed at the site where lava damaged the road yesterday.
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