I was one of the two visitors involved in the Holtavörðuheiði accident back in December.
I am writing in hopes of passing on our appreciation to all the locals who assisted us during that very difficult period of time.
My friend and I were very lucky to survive the accident, and it is unfortunate that the Icelandic driver that crashed into us did not.
At the accident site, there were several locals who stopped to assist. In particular, there was an off-duty ICU nurse and two young ladies (from Blönduós, I believe, according to the accident report) who checked on us and stayed with us until the ambulance from Borgarnes arrived. There were of course many others as well, but I never got the chance to find out more about them. During the wait, the snow started blowing stronger and it was getting very cold. They gave us sweaters and blankets (I believe the nurse actually had a thermal shock blanket which was very useful) and also tried to reassure us.
The Borgarnes ambulance team was also fantastic in handling the situation. The ER department in Landspítali National University Hospital was also fantastic during our stay there.
I alone was discharged that same evening and had to find accommodation in Reykjavík. The next day, I realized that I needed to stay longer in the same accommodation as my friend wasn't yet discharged. I also had to spend the day trying to contact the Borgarnes police as not all our luggage came with us to Reykjavík (my friend's passport and wallet etc. was all left in the car). Þóra from Norðurey Guesthouse was great in making it easy for me to book another night at the same price.
When we finally left Iceland on Boxing Day, the flight attendants on Icelandair were exceptional in trying to make us comfortable. Even though the flight got very delayed and we had to disembark and swap aircraft, we didn't feel too distressed (it was very frustrating but bearable) due to the flight attendants.
The accident was a very unfortunate mar to the otherwise amazing experience in Iceland prior to that. However, the Icelandic people who assisted us definitely made the whole situation manageable.
My friend, Kate H., and I are not fully recovered from the accident, even four months on, but are progressing well.