Iceland volcano: Latest eruption sends lava into small town

Iceland volcano.

A volcano erupted in Iceland for the second time in a month on Sunday, sending lava pouring into a residential neighborhood for the first time in more than four decades, authorities said.

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The latest eruption occurred at about 8 a.m. local time near Hagafell near the town of Grindavik, The New York Times reported.

According to Iceland’s civil defense agency, hundreds of earthquakes in the Reykjanes Peninsula created a fissure that measures more than 3,200 feet in length, the newspaper reported.

Officials said the fissure continues to grow.

The main road into Grindavik has been cut off by the flow of lava, according to the BBC.

Iceland President Gudni Jóhannesson urged the nation in a live broadcast to “stand together and have compassion for those who cannot be in their homes.”

Earlier in the day, Jóhannesson posted on X, formerly known as Twitter, that “no lives are in danger.” He did warn that “infrastructure may be under threat.”

Images from television broadcaster RUV showed at least three houses engulfed by fire, The Guardian reported.

“In a little village like this one, we’re like a family, we all know each other as family -- it’s tragic seeing this,” a local resident, Sveinn Ari Gudjonsson, 55, told Agence France-Presse. “It’s unreal, it’s like watching a film.”

Last month, a larger eruption threatened Grindavik and a nearby power plant, the Times reported. Sunday’s eruption was smaller but caused more concern because lava began flowing into the town, according to the newspaper.

Science journalist and volcanologist Robin Andrews told the BBC that the current eruption is an “extremely perilous and deleterious situation” because lava has spewed into residential areas.

He told the news organization that the flow of lava shows “no sign of slowing down.”

Grindavik resident Kjartan Adolfsson, who has taken up temporary residence in Iceland’s capital city of Reykjavík, said he and his neighbors were pessimistic that they would be able to return to their homes in the near future.

“None of us knows what to think today,” Adolfsson told the Times.

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