UPDATE:The eruption of Iceland’s Bardarbunga is happening right now and you can watch it on livestream right here.
Part of the area is off-limits, according to a tweet by Gisli Olafsson, an emergency response director in Iceland. “Until scientists downgrade danger of eruption… area north of Bárðarbunga will be closed to cars and hikers,” he writes.
UPDATE: The threat level has been lowered to orange, the second-highest level. Restrictions to air travel have been canceled. Seismic activity continues at the volcano, but an eruption is no longer believed to be imminent.
Iceland has evacuated hundreds of people and issued a red alert for air travel after the Bardarbunga volcano showed indications of a potential upcoming eruption.
The Bardarbunga volcano located under Iceland’s most extensive glacier, Vatnajokull, is undergoing seismic activity. A small eruption has taken place 30 km (~19 miles) away, under the Dyngjujokull ice cap.
Iceland has issued a red alert, the highest warning possible, and airspace over the region has been closed. A Europe-wide alert has also been issued. Still, all Icelandic airports are remaining open for the time being.
The Icelandic Meteorological Office deployed a team of scientists across the region on Saturday afternoon to monitor the seismic activity. According to a subsequent report, tremor levels had decreased over the course of the afternoon, but earthquake activity continued.
On Wednesday, geologists reported that roughly 300 earthquakes had been detected in the area since midnight on Tuesday, prompting authorities to evacuate several hundred people from the region in case of an eruption.
In April 2010, Iceland’s Eyjafjallajokull volcano erupted, causing the largest closure of European airspace since the Second World War.
In 1996, an eruption in the area was believed to have been started by a strong earthquake measuring 5 on the Richter scale.
Source: BBC News