City In Peril As Emergency Response Fails In Iceland

As a dormant volcano explodes for its second time since November, lava flows are destroying houses in Iceland.

Reports show lava streams have reached the outskirts of Grindavík, Iceland, engulfing houses, even though enormous emergency earthworks were constructed in reaction to the eruption of a long-dormant volcano and are reportedly functioning effectively. Lava is flowing into a residential street as a second crack erupted closer to the municipality than the first, forcing the evacuation of thousands of residents from Grindavík.

Although no deaths have been officially recorded as of yet, one construction worker went missing after presumably plunging into a fissure in the earth that was created by the eruption last month, just before the most recent outburst. The potential of rockfalls rendered the rescue operation too hazardous to proceed with; therefore, it was eventually canceled. The search and rescue team sent their deepest sympathies to the relatives of the man who went missing.

Although the pyroduct, known as a “magma tunnel,” seems to have poured under the town, the current eruption’s force has temporarily decreased, according to Iceland’s national radio. The settlement of Grindavík has been evacuated three times in the last two months due to eruptions. And more may likely occur in the near future.

The citizens of Grindavík are often assured that permanent solutions will be found. According to geologists, earthquakes will last for years, but the government only has temporary fixes. People are looking to the government to assist them in selling their homes since they cannot do it on their own. The earthquakes have rendered their properties worthless.

Icelandic officials launched a last-ditch attempt to construct massive earthwork barriers to redirect the lava flow far from the town last December in anticipation of more lava flows.

According to Grindavík mayor Fannar Jónasson, the eruption is causing grief among the villagers and might have major repercussions for them, as the lava blocks water and heating pipelines in the middle of winter in the Arctic. These are exceptional situations, he said. They are broken.