Icy Conditions Send Over Two Dozen to Emergency Room

Since yesterday evening, over two dozen people have visited the emergency room at the National University Hospital of Iceland owing to icy conditions in the Greater Reykjavík Area, RÚV reports.

According to Jón Magnús Kristjánsson – Chief Emergency Physician at the National University Hospital of Iceland – the first patients that visited the ER on account of ice-related injuries arrived at around 8 PM yesterday. The hospital warns of long waits and points to local health centres, as well as Læknavaktin (a medical service provider operating outside working hours).

“Beginning yesterday evening, approximately 15 individuals sought assistance at the ER. Since 7 AM this morning there have also been several injuries. We’ve probably treated about 10 or 15 patients today,” Jón Magnús stated.

Injuries among emergency-room patients have varied: “We’re seeing all kinds of fractures, whether to wrists, shoulders, or ankles. Some have suffered only bruises or scrapes.” Jón Magnús recommends that pedestrians wear crampons.

Asked whether patients were of all ages, Jón Magnús replied in the affirmative. “Yes, we’re seeing people of all ages, very few children, but adults of all ages.”

According to the Icelandic Met Office, icy conditions are likely to persist tomorrow, especially in Southwest Iceland. “Temperatures will remain close to 0. Rain falling on frozen ground makes for slippery conditions, just like this morning. Temperatures are expected to rise over the next 24 hours; however, there is a high probability that icy conditions will persist, especially in the Greater Reykjavík Area,” writes meteorologists Þorsteinn V. Jónsson.

Gullfoss Footpath Closed Tomorrow Due to Icy Conditions

Owing to ongoing frost by the waterfall Gullfoss in Southwest Iceland, rangers from the Environment Agency of Iceland have taken measures to make footpaths in the area safer. Not all precautions have proven effective, however; incessant spray has rendered the gravel footpath leading to the waterfall extremely slippery. To ensure the safety of visitors, the footpath will be closed tomorrow (23rd of October).

Other footpaths in the area have been sanded and will remain open. The frost is expected to continue throughout the week. The footpath will open again later this fall if weather conditions improve.

Rangers have also put up signs recommending the use of crampons by Gullfoss and Geysir.