From Iceland — Blue Lagoon Closure Likely To Be Extended Amid Volcanic Gas Pollution

Blue Lagoon Closure Likely To Be Extended Amid Volcanic Gas Pollution

Published March 26, 2024

Photo by
Art Bicnick/The Reykjavík Grapevine

The Blue Lagoon is likely to remain closed due to the ongoing volcanic activity on the Reykjanes peninsula. Helga Árnadóttir, general manager of the popular tourist attraction, told RÚV Tuesday that the site will remain closed until the safety of staff and visitors can be assured.

Roadwork has been ongoing to allow passage along Grindavíkurvegur and access to the Blue Lagoon, but gas pollution in the area remains a concern as the eruption continues. Helga told the national broadcaster the Blue Lagoon is installing more gas metres around the facility to better monitor the situation.

“We’ve just been taking it one step at a time, we expect the lockdown to be extended.” Helga said. “We plan to get the situation under control before the opening.”

It was reported late last week that an employee working on the site of the shuttered lagoon had to be hospitalised for gas poisoning.

Residents living near the ongoing eruption have been told to keep their windows closed and monitor air quality readings on loftgæð High concentrations of sulphur dioxide can be problematic for those with respiratory issues. Symptoms of exposure include irritation to the eyes, nose and throat.

Eruption Ongoing

The eruption that began between Hagafell and Stóra Sgógfell on March is ongoing. The Icelandic Meteorological Office reports that activity from the eruptive sites near Sundhnúkur crater rows remains stable.

Ground uplift beneath Svartsengi has been ongoing, but minimal since the eruption began, indicating that magma is flowing directly from underground to the eruption site without first collecting in the reservoir in the area.

Follow our ongoing coverage of volcanic activity on the Reykjanes peninsula and watch the Grapevine’s video reporting on YouTube.

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