The District Commissioner’s Office in Húsavík, in cooperation with the Department of Civil Protection, decided around 9:00 this morning to lift the inner closure of the eruption site at Holuhraun.
A 4.8 magnitude earthquake hit 4.7 km (2 miles) north-northeast of Bárðarbunga volcano in Vatnajökull glacier at 3:45 this morning. The epicenter was in the northern rim of the caldera.
There are still no signs of a sub-glacial eruption in Bárðarbunga, which would cause a flood, but one possible explanation for the unrest in the intrusive dike yesterday is that the magma has come into contact with water through underground fissure systems.
The Civil Protection Department has decided that the eruption site shall remain closed. The area was closed around 3:15 pm today and the Iceland Review team had to retreat, like everyone else, to a cabin in Drekagil canyon. At 8:20 pm it was decided that the ban will remain in effect....
The pressure in the intrusive dike north of Dyngjujökull, Vatnajökull outlet glacier, is increasing and a 1-km (3,300-feet) wide and deep depression has formed under the glacier.
An earthquake of magnitude 5.5 hit the northern rim of the Bárðabunga caldera this morning shortly after 3 am. This is one of the biggest earthquakes to hit the region since increased seismic activity was first recorded there on August 16.
Travel companies offering tours in Iceland are looking into the possibility of adding organized tours to the eruption site in Holuhraun north of Vatnajökull glacier. They are waiting for the Department of Civil Protection to open more areas.
It is clear that the future of the Holuhraun eruption remains a big question mark. “The eruption may continue for a week or even a month. To predict what happens next we have to investigate GPS measurements to see if the pressure below has been reduced. If not, the eruption can just go on and on...