Our Icelandic colleagues have just contacted us. Ásdís Jónsdóttir writes “Just a note to tell you that an eruption has begun in Vatnajökull – it is under the outlet of Dyngjujökull. It started about half an hour ago (at quarter past two p.m.). They are evacuating areas to the north of the glacier (they were partly evacuated earlier).” Gísli Pálsson adds “ It’s now maximum alert, limited air travel around.”
Their most recent report indicates that lava has emerged under the glacier, but that the future progress of this event is still unknown: They list six points (From http://en.vedur.is/earthquakes-and-volcanism/articles/nr/2947)
- A small lava-eruption has been detected under the Dyngjujökull glacier.
- The Icelandic Coast Guard airplane TF-SIF is flying over the area with representatives from the Civil Protection and experts from the Icelandic Met Office and the Institute of Earth Sciences. Data from the equipment on board is expected later today.
- Data from radars and web-cameras is being received, showing no signs of changes at the surface.
- The estimate is that 150-400 meters of ice is above the area.
- The aviation color code for the Bárðarbunga volcano has been changed from orange to red.
- Some minutes ago (14:04), an earthquake occurred, estimated 4.5 in magnitude.