Experts have suggested that a possible volcanic eruption in Iceland is unlikely to cause travel chaos, as it would not produce the same ash clouds that disrupted flights in 2010. According to volcanologists, the type of magma involved in the recent eruption and the one 13 years ago differ significantly. The 2010 eruption occurred on a glacier, causing water and ash to be expelled into the upper atmosphere, while recent eruptions on the Reykjanes peninsula have involved "very fluid" magma that allows gas bubbles to escape instead of forming ash.
Professor Matt Watson from Bristol University's School of Earth Sciences explained that the circumstances surrounding the 2010 eruption were unusual, as it took place on a glacier and was affected by unfortunate weather conditions for travel. However, he reassured individuals concerned about potential flight disruptions that the current situation is different. Monitoring stations have located over 1,000 small earthquakes in the Hagafell area near the fishing port of Grindavik since Saturday, leading experts to believe that an eruption is imminent.
Professor Watson further explained that the Icelanders possess excellent data interpretation skills and have been monitoring earthquake activity in the region to predict where the eruption is likely to occur. He stated that even if the eruption were to take place beneath the sea, the most probable outcome would be the creation of a new island. Although British Airways and Icelandair are closely monitoring the situation, flights are currently operating normally.
In 2010, a massive volcanic eruption in Iceland disrupted air travel across Europe for nearly a week, leaving numerous planes grounded and around ten million travelers stranded. Despite the potential for a volcanic eruption in Iceland, experts are confident that the current situation will not generate the same travel chaos. With the magma involved in recent eruptions being less likely to produce ash, the likelihood of flight cancellations and delays is significantly reduced. Nevertheless, authorities and airline companies will continue to monitor the situation closely and communicate any changes directly to affected customers.