Airlines warned of ash cloud risk as Icelandic volcano threatens to erupt

Thousands of earthquakes have been recorded in Iceland in recent days, amid concerns one of the country’s volcanoes could erupt and cause travel chaos across Europe. Some 3,000 small earthquakes have occurred since Saturday at the country’s largest volcano system, Bardarbunga, which is located under Iceland’s largest glacier, Vatnajokull. Iceland’s Meteorological Office said no earthquakes above magnitude three had been recorded in the last 24 hours, and seismologists have said that magma is moving horizontally, rather than vertically.

It cannot be ruled out that the seismic activity in Bardarbunga could lead to a volcanic eruption.

Iceland’s civil protection agency

Meteorologist Einar Einarsson said earthquakes were happening practically every minute. The country’s aviation alert level for the risk of a possible eruption is currently at orange, the second-most severe level. An area north of the volcano has been evacuated by Iceland’s civil protection agency, which said it could not rule out an eruption. All roads leading into the mostly uninhabited area were closed earlier this week.