Travellers in Reynisfjara were in great danger yesterday as strong winds caused rocks to become airborne and fall upon visitors to the area, Vísir reports. The Ring Road, route 1, was closed yesterday in the municipality of Öræfasveit due to the severe weather. Gusts of wind reached more than 40 metres per second, and the road to Mýrdalssandur was closed as well due to sandstorms.
A group of Chinese travellers, on a 3-day stopover in Iceland, found themselves in severe danger as the conditions became apparent once on site. Ragnar Heiðarsson, a bus driver, brought the group to Reynisfjara yesterday morning. "It was not just a sandstorm on the beach, there were rocks flying and the group was in trouble. They went to beach so I had to fetch them and lead them back. Some crawled back but what I was most afraid about were the cars. The rockstorm was so heavy that my windows were nearly shattered". Ragnar said that the folks were in severe danger and that he experienced difficulties getting the group back together due to travellers wanting to take photos of the waves and the severe weather.
"This is a situation that Icelanders would not put up with so we should not be bringing travellers here in these conditions", Ragnar stated.
Reynisfjara is one of the top tourist attractions in the South of Iceland and the area was filled with travellers yesterday, mostly travelling by themselves on rental cars. Most of the travellers diverted to nearby Seljalandsfoss where weather conditions were much better. "We were headed all the way out to Reynisfjara but were told not to go further than Seljalandsfoss. We had to change the plan" said Örn Guðmundsson, a local tour guide.