An alert phase has been declared in Seyðisfjörður, East Iceland, due to the risk of landslides. Around 20 residents have been evacuated from their homes in order to ensure their safety. The town was devastated by a series of landslides last December, which destroyed or damaged 14 buildings in the town. Many residents are now being evacuated for the second or third time.
Meanwhile, in Tröllaskagi, Northeast Iceland, an uncertainty phase due to the risk of landslides remains in effect. Some 30 residents who were evacuated from farms in the area have not yet been permitted to return to their homes. At least two additional landslides fell in the area today, bringing the total number to at least 22 since heavy rain saturated the mountains last weekend.
An emergency response centre has been opened in Seyðisfjörður for those who have had to leave their homes. The Civil Protection Department and the Icelandic Met Office are evaluating the risk on a regular basis with the help of equipment on the mountain slopes that collects data on land movement.
Davíð Kristinnsson, vice-chair of the Seyðisfjörður Search and Rescue team, says residents have been affected by the news of landslides from Tröllaskagi, as well as the heavy rain that has hit the town. Last year’s landslides have left their mark on the community: “once you’ve heard the mountain scream, it isn’t easy to forget.”