Brush fire near the Alcoa Smelter yesterday and houses at risk
Two houses narrowly escaped a fire that occurred in Hafnarfjörður today, west of Alcoa Smelter in Straumsvík. Sheep pen and a barn as well as a vehicle were damaged in the fire. Two houses narrowly escaped the fire. The fire spread significantly fast, but the ground is very dry.
It was noted that no family houses were in danger, since the two houses were smaller house that are not occupied. The fire occurred on the farm Strengur, but the farm includes places known to many as Óttarstaðir, which are well visible from the Reykjanes road.
A few hundred metres
According to the fire department’s duty officer, the area covered by the fire is several hundred meters in length. High winds and rough terrain made firefighting difficult.
Wind blew from the east, so there was little chance that the brushfire would reach toward the settlement in Hafnarfjörður.
Soon, 20 firefighters were already in the area, and ten more joined shortly thereafter. Almost all available fire departments were working in the area, according to the duty officer.
Caused by reckless use of fireworks
“A group of students from us were with teachers on a field trip in this area and it seems that some sort of mishandling took place regarding fire,” Guðríður Eldey Arnardóttir, headmaster of Kópavogur’s College MK, told mbl.is. Now, the capital area police have confirmed in a diary entry that a man who set off some fireworks caused the damage by accident.
Arnardóttir says that people don’t realize how dry it’s been and that no one, of course, intends this to happen. She tells everyone in shock who’s involved.
“The students were in search of ingredients for cooking out in nature, and it seems that one of the students went outside the scope of the lesson with these consequences,” she says about the young person who, according to the schoolmaster, is in complete shock.
Hope to finish putting out all the fires today
Four firefighters were patrolling the fire in Hafnafjörður last night. Special protection lines have been put in place to limit the spread of the fire.
“There’s also one old trail down there and we’re going to try to take it there. It’s hopeless to be here all over the lava with hoses and stuff,” an fire chief at the Reykjavík Metropolitan Fire Department tells mbl.is and adds that they hope they will be able to put all the fires out today.