Planning to Be Prepared for the Worst

Þorbjörn mountain, located between Grindavík and the Blue Lagoon.

Þorbjörn mountain, located between Grindavík and the Blue Lagoon. Kristinn Magnússon

Vala Hafstað

“Many people are no doubt worried and anxious about the situation,” Grindavík Mayor Fannar Jónasson told residents as he addressed them at a town meeting yesterday, held after a phase of uncertainty was declared in Reykjanes, due to the possibility of magma accumulation. The meeting was held to inform residents about contingency plans, in the event of a volcanic eruption, reports. Even though that scenario is not believed to be the likeliest, according to scientists, residents must be prepared for the worst.

The meeting began at 4 pm and by 5 pm, all in attendance received an SMS on their cell phones from the Emergency Line, as the emergency system was being tested.

Residents were advised to store the 112 emergency number on their list of contacts on their cell phone, and to set the phone so that the ring tone can always be heard when messages arrive from 112, even if the phone is on silent. They were furthermore advised to choose a special ring tone for calls or messages from 112, to make them easily distinguishable.

Grindavík, Southwest Iceland.

Grindavík, Southwest Iceland. Kristinn Magnússon

In the unlikely event that houses in Grindavík need to be evacuated, relief centers will be opened at Kórinn sports center in Kópavogur, at Reykjaneshöll sports center in Reykjanesbær and at the sports center in Þorlákshöfn.

Suðurnes Police Chief Ólafur Helgi Kjartansson advised residents to think about what they would need to bring along, in case they had to leave their home. He was pleased with how well the meeting was attended and encouraged residents to listen closely to information provided by scientists who addressed the gathering.

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