Orange Weather Warning For Much of Iceland

Björgunarfélag Vestmannaeyja

Today, there is an orange warning in effect due to a severe storm from the north and heavy precipitation in the northern part of the country. Snowfall is expected in the mountains in addition to sleet and rain in the lowland.

The Met Office has also stated that the first snow avalanches of the autumn cannot be ruled out if snow accumulation is rapid. Likewise, rockslides and landslides cannot be ruled out in the lower parts of mountain slopes in this weather, given the expected precipitation. The Met Office notes that there is no perceived threat to settlements.

Damage Caused to Residences

Sharp winds have however caused some damage to residences throughout Iceland. The Westman Island ICE-SAR team was called out today to assist in fixing roofs when sheet metal began to fly around Heimaey.

Björgunarfélag Vestmannaeyja
Björgunarfélag Vestmannaeyja helping to fix roofs in Heimaey.

RÚV also reports that rescue teams were called out in Höfn in Hornafjörður due to a door that had flown off a building.  The door flew off from the Glacier World guesthouse, which is about 19 kilometres from Höfn and approximately three kilometres from the main road.

Impassable Roads in North Iceland

The orange weather warning has also caused difficult driving conditions, and motorists are advised to avoid highland areas. Conditions are particularly bad in North Iceland, where a severe storm is expected overnight. In the Southeast, there will be a blizzard east of Vatnajökull Glacier starting in the afternoon and continuing into the evening.

For more information on weather conditions and safe travel, see the website of the Icelandic Met Office.

M4.9 Earthquake Shakes the North Overnight

earthquake iceland 2022

The Meteorological Office of Iceland reports that North Iceland was struck by a series of earthquakes last night.

The announcement, seen below in a public Facebook post, states that the largest recorded quake in the string was registered at 4:01AM, September 8, at a magnitude of 4.9.

The quake was centered approximately 12km east-northeast of Grímsey, and was reported to be felt throughout the North. Some 300 smaller aftershocks were also reported.

The Meteorological Office reports that such quakes are common in this region of Iceland, and that no signs of significant unrest have been detected.

Historically Cold Summer Confirmed in Recent Report from Met Office

icelandic weather summer temperatures

According to a recent report from the Meteorological Office of Iceland, this year’s summer has broken records for low temperatures.

In total, there were 27 days when the temperature exceeded 20°C (68°F) in all of Iceland. Compared to last summer, there were 57 such days of higher temperatures.

The highest recorded temperature this summer was in Mánárbakki in Northeast Iceland, an area that often has sunny and warm weather in the summer.

Reykjavík only managed to register 18°C (64°F) this summer, a 20-year year record that was only lower in 2001.

However, summer is still not entirely over. Relatively calm and warm weather is expected this weekend. Unlikely to break records, it should still be good weather for the final days of hiking, fishing, berry picking, and other outdoor activities this year.