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Offbeat Iceland: The eruption of the Fagradalsfjall volcano still extends

06:30  06 april  2021
06:30  06 april  2021 Source:   lepoint.fr

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U NE new fault created. Monday 6 April, the eruption of the Fagradalsfjall volcano, in progress for more than two weeks, and about forty kilometers from Reykjavik in Iceland , extended with a new crack spitting a narrow lava stream from several hundred. meters, devalting to a nearby valley. The new fissure, long from about 150 to 200 meters, is about 700 meters northeast of the first eruption home located in the Geldingadalir Valley, on the edge of Mount Fagradalsfjall, according to the last point of the Meteorological Office of Iceland (IMO).

This new fault has opened around noon (local time and GMT), as well as another fissure much smaller, and the melting lava flows this time to another small neighboring valley named Merardalir, indicated the organization in a statement.

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Access to the site now closed to the public

new images of the Icelandic civil protection showed a long and narrow orange stream of magma hitting through the hills from the new eruptive flaw, over hundreds of meters. "At the start (the lava) spun at nearly 10 meters per second", because of the strong slope, "but it has slowed considerably," said the Agence France-Presse the vulcanologist Thorvaldur Thórdarson.

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This new phase of the eruption proves that the underpressure magma "was overpressure because it had the ability to open new cracks," he said . "It's not a surprise but it's an interesting development," according to the expert.

Access to the site, where many visitors presume since the beginning of the eruption on March 19, has been closed and evacuated, according to the authorities. It has been nearly 800 years since the lava had not flowed in the region of the Reykjan Peninsula, southwest of the capital.

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Icelandic vulcanologists, which initially provided for a short-term eruption, now relax over several weeks or much more. "My feeling is that I do not see a sign that it stops," commented Thorvaldur Thórdarson. "We will see that for a while," said the vulcanologist, without risking to give a more precise duration. The last eruption in the Reykjan Peninsula, this region of southwestern Iceland where the eruption occurs, dates back to eight hundred years and extended over three decades with several eruptive episodes from 1210 to 1240.

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The site has become the attraction of the moment in Iceland: to the last score Sunday, 36,293 people had gone to the foot of the two small craters pouredting the lava - which Now covers 30 hectares - from the installation of a meter by the Icelandic Tourist Office on March 24. The viral videos of the eruption go around the world in recent weeks, including a showing a handful of Icelandic playing volunteer as if nothing had happened.

The site of the eruption is only a few kilometers from the tourist site of the hot and turquoise waters of the Blue Lagoon, and about ten kilometers from the nearest town, the small fishing port of Grindavik - but without arouse fear of damage. The lava eruption is much more bucolic than that, called "explosive", of the Eyjafjallajökull in 2010, which paralyzed for weeks the air traffic in Europe .

In Iceland, the most active European volcanic zone, a volcanic eruption takes place on average every four to five years. The last dates back to 2014-2015 in an uninhabited area of ​​the center of the North Atlantic Island.

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