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Community Meeting Held Due To Increased Seismic Activity

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Community Meeting Held Due To Increased Seismic Activity

Seals looking at Öræfajökull.

Öræfajökull, an ice-covered volcano located in South-East Iceland. Photo: Páll Stefánsson.

The Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management, as well as the Met Office, held a meeting with residents of Öræfar yesterday. RÚV reports.

Over 26 small earthquakes were detected under Öræfajökull glacier for the past 48 hours. “The Met Office has placed more seismographs in the area and more similar devices are on their way. Alongside this we’ve begun work at evacuation plans and other necessary work that we need to keep in mind if Öræfajökull starts to show any further signs,” Víðir Reynisson at the Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management told RÚV.

According to Víðir, Öræfajökull began to show increased seismic activity during the latter parts of the year. The area contains one of the most active volcanoes in Iceland, and although there is no guarantee anything will happen, Víðir feels it important to always be prepared. “I always say that we ought to respect our volcanoes and maybe show them some fear as well.”

Nearby residents appear to be quite calm over the situation, which is to be expected of anyone living near such an area. An evacuation plan ought to be finished early next year.

Öræfajökull has erupted two times over the past millennia. The last eruption was 290 years ago. Although increased seismic activity is always a reason for caution, the chances of an eruption in the near future aren’t necessarily high.

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