Björk Announces Cancellation of Reykjavík Concert Series

Singer Björk

Björk’s advertised concert series in Reykjavík in June has been cancelled due to production problems. All concertgoers will have their tickets refunded.

Irresolvable production issues

In February of this year, Icelandic singer Björk announced plans to hold a series of concerts at the Laugardalshöll Stadium on June 7, 10, and 13.

As noted in an article on Vísir, the concerts were to last two hours and feature music from her albums Utopia and Fossora. “This is the biggest show that Björk has ever done and will boast one of the more numerous assembly of digital screens on a single stage.”

Yesterday, however, Björk announced that she was calling the concert off. “There have been problems with the production of the concert that we do not expect to be able to solve in time. We realise that this will disappoint ticket holders and apologise for the inconvenience this may cause,” a press release from Björk states.

“We are determined to do everything we can to prevent this from happening again and will review our processes with this in mind. We still hope to find a way to make the concert a reality next year. However, as it may take weeks or months to resolve all technical and logistical issues, we are forced at this point to cancel and refund.”

Reykjanesbraut Reopened, Delay in Keflavík Flights

Weather alerts

This article was updated at 1.30 PM.

Reykjanesbraut has been reopened and a number of delayed flights are expected to depart from Keflavík Airport starting at 3 PM. A yellow weather alert is in effect in the capital area and Reykjanes peninsula.

Travellers upset by delays, lack of information

A number of flights from Keflavík Airport were cancelled or delayed yesterday due to poor weather conditions, leaving hundreds of travellers stranded. Many of them complained about the lack of information and support provided by Isavia (the national airport and air navigation service provider of Iceland) and Icelandair, while also expressing dissatisfaction with low temperatures and the selection of food available at the airport.

Yellow weather alerts are still in effect but as of 1 PM this afternoon, Reykjanesbraut (the road leading from the capital area to the airport) has been reopened. The road was briefly opened to the east last evening but closed again last night.

A number of early-morning flights to Europe were cancelled and Icelandair has delayed daytime flights to Tenerife, Las Palmas, and Boston (estimated departures at 3 PM or later, at the time of writing).

Travellers can monitor the situation on the Icelandic Road Administration’s Twitter page, umferdin.is, and, of course, the departures and arrivals section of Keflavík Airport’s website.

Alert Phase Revoked, Three Weeks after Eruption Ceases

iceland eruption 2022

The National Police Commissioner, in consultation with the Suðurnes Police, has decided to revoke the Alert Phase that has been in effect due to the volcanic eruption in the Reykjanes peninsula. Three weeks have elapsed since any volcanic activity was detected in the area.

Uncertainty Phase declared

On July 30, an Uncertainty Phase was declared on Reykjanes after a swarm of earthquakes rocked the peninsula. Four days later, on August 3, a volcanic eruption began, as magma began spewing out of several-hundred-metre-long fissures in a lava field near Fagradalsfjall, which had been created by last year’s eruption in the same location. An Emergency Phase was subsequently declared, which was lowered to an Alert Phase in light of the relative smallness of the eruption.

The eruption passed through several phases before all activity ceased on Saturday, August 20. Yesterday, the National Police Commissioner, in consultation with the Suðurnes Police, decided to revoke the Alert and Uncertainty Phases that had been in effect in the area, RÚV reports. Authorities will continue to monitor the area closely, the Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management has announced.

“We can expect intrusion activity and earthquakes in Reykjanes over the coming weeks. Residents are encouraged to secure furniture and other household items to prevent injury and/or damages to their homes,” a press release from the Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management reads.

The press release also states that rangers will be positioned at the eruption site to monitor foot traffic. The presence of police and rescue workers will be gradually diminished in the area, although they will be dispatched if needed. Lastly, the Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management underscores the hazard of venturing onto the lava, noting that craters and hot lava are protected by nature-preservation laws.

 

 

Niceair Cancels All UK Flights in June: “Brexit-Related Problems”

Airplane from Niceair

Niceair has cancelled all scheduled flights from Akureyri to the UK in June. The airline has experienced a few so-called “Brexit-related complications” as far as their Iceland-bound passengers are concerned, Vísir reports.

Brexit-related obstacles

Niceair embarked on its maiden flight from Iceland to the UK last week. The plane returned to Iceland empty, however, and travellers who had booked tickets back to Akureyri were forced to fly back with other airlines.

A press release from Niceair today announced that all scheduled flights from Akureyri to the UK in June had been cancelled, Vísir reports. Niceair operates aeroplanes from the Maltese charter airline HiFly, which British authorities maintain lacks the necessary permits to fly to and from the UK.

“They are, nevertheless, listed as certified flight operators by British authorities,” the press release reads. “Furthermore, the authorities stipulated that Niceair, an Icelandic company, secure a British travel-agency licence for the sale of travel packages (flights, hotels, rental cars), which lies beyond the operational purview of Niceair. Nowhere were these conditions mentioned during our three-month application process.”

“As far as we can gather,” the press release continues, “the problem, among other things, is that Iceland has a bilateral agreement with the UK on flight operations, and the UK has a similar agreement with the EU. These two agreements overlap in the UK. The problem arises once you begin transporting passengers from the UK to Iceland with a flight operator that has legal domicile in the EU (and not in Iceland or in the UK).” The press release also notes that it “appears likely” that the British authorities are worried about consumer protection; after Brexit, the UK authorities ceased automatic approval of European consumer legislation.

Unlikely that a solution will be found before the weekend

Despite Niceair working to resolve the matter, it is unlikely that a solution will be found before the weekend.

“We’ve worked non-stop to find a solution and have proposed numerous solutions to the British authorities,” the press release reads. “We’ve been aided by the Icelandic Transport Authority, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the British Embassy in Iceland – but no solution has been found. The weekend is fast approaching, and it sounds like a solution is unlikely before that time, owing to a lack of personnel and time.”

Travellers will be unable to book flights to the UK until a permanent solution is found. All passengers who had booked flights to the UK with the airline will be offered a refund. Niceair will also assist those looking to find alternative flights to or from the UK.

Mbl.is reported this afternoon that about 70 passengers who had flights booked to London with Niceair were waiting at the Akureyri airport. Their flight had been scheduled for yesterday evening but had been pushed back to noon today.