A volcano in Iceland has finally started erupting after weeks of intense earthquake activity that led to the evacuation of a nearby town.
The Fagradalsfjall volcano, located on the Reykjanes peninsula in southwest Iceland, began spewing lava into the sky at 10.17pm on December 18, the Icelandic Met Office announced.
The eruption is located some four kilometres northeast of the fishing town of Grindavik, the 4,000 residents of which were brought to safety in November over fears of an imminent eruption.
As the magma that had been building up under the surface of the volcano for weeks exploded, one eye-witness reported to the BBC the sky in the direction of Grindavik “lit up in red”, while another described to the Mirror the lava being shot up in the air as a “volcanic walls of fire” as tall as 150 metres.
While the situation is quickly developing, the lava is currently flowing at a rate of around 100 to 200 cubic metres per second, the local Met Office said. People have been urged to stay away from the area not to put themselves in danger and make the work of experts analysing the situation more difficult – but not everybody is abiding by the order.
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