A volcano in Iceland near Reykjavik has started erupting less than a year after its first eruption in 6,000 years ended.
The Fagradalsfjall volcano is located about 20 miles (approx. 32 km) from Keflavik Airport in the southwest of the island state.
It erupted around 1:30 p.m. local time on Wednesday.
No flights were disrupted and the international airport remained open. Roads in the area have been closed.
Lava has emerged from a narrow fissure, as seen in footage of a live video feed from Icelandic state broadcaster RÚV.
The lava has flowed over an area of solidified lava released during last year’s multi-month eruption.
The outbreak, which began in March 2021, lasted six months before ending on September 19. It was the volcano’s first eruption in 6,000 years and the first eruption on the Reykjanes Peninsula in more than 800 years.
Thorvaldur Thordarson, a professor of volcanology at the University of Iceland, told Icelandic media that he doesn’t think the fissure is dangerous until it gets bigger.
He believes the rift is about 500 meters long and the lava is flowing at a rate of a few cubic meters per second.
However, he has warned people in the area not to inhale the “cloud” of sulfur gas being emitted by the volcano.
People are expected to be in the Reykjanes Peninsula to watch the event, known as the “Tourist Breakout” due to the relative safety for people to see it in person.
It’s a common term for eruptions of this magnitude, according to tourism website Visit Iceland.
The 2021 eruption started with a fissure just 180 meters long, the website says.
It adds: “The lava flow soon concentrated into two craters that erupted continuously. There was no explosive activity producing ash plumes like the 2010 Eyjafjallajökull eruption that disrupted air traffic over Europe.
“In this case, the eruption turned out to be an effusive fissure eruption, producing a steady outflow of about 6 m3 of basaltic lava and releasing volcanic gases.
“After a few weeks, new cracks formed and new openings began to open while others became dormant. At one point, six craters erupted simultaneously.”
The eruption of Eyjafjallajökull in 2010 sent a plume of volcanic ash into the atmosphere, disrupting air travel between Europe and North America.
Millions of passengers were stranded after more than 100,000 flights were grounded.
https://www.independent.ie/world-news/iceland-volcano-near-reykjavik-erupts-for-second-time-in-6000-years-41889207.html Iceland: Volcano near Reykjavik erupts for second time in 6,000 years