A bus carrying 25 tourists caught fire near Lake Þingvallavatn yesterday. A firefighter told RÚV that the bus was almost completely burned by the time the fire brigade arrived.
Engulfed in flames almost immediately
Shortly before noon yesterday, a bus carrying 25 tourists came to a halt near Lake Þingvallavatn in Southwest Iceland. According to eyewitnesses, the bus burst into flames shortly afterwards. All of the passengers managed to exit the bus safely.
Eyjólfur Óli Jónsson, duty officer with the Árnes County Fire Department, told RÚV that the bus was almost completely burned by the time the fire brigade arrived. The fire department’s initial efforts were focused on extinguishing the surrounding vegetation. “It was almost impossible to put out the fire with water without polluting the soil near the highway. So as we waited for a tanker to arrive, we concentrated on the fire that had spread to the nearby vegetation. When the tanker arrived, we used foam to smother the fire on the bus.”
According to Eyjólfur, the passengers, despite being alarmed, displayed remarkable composure in the face of the incident. “When I encountered them earlier, they appeared remarkably composed. It seems they had evacuated before the fire intensified.”
Georg Aspelund Þorkelsson was sitting in a nearby car when the fire erupted. He told RÚV that it was thanks to the bus driver’s quick wits that things didn’t turn out worse.
“The passengers exited the bus and grabbed their luggage; it all happened very quickly. The driver parked in the middle of the road, which I believe was the right decision, to prevent the fire from spreading to the nearby vegetation. The bus was then engulfed in flames in a fairly short time.”
The cause of the fire remains unknown.