Sleepless Icelanders await eruption

Why are Icelanders sleep-deprived?

Over 40,000 quakes have disrupted their sleep since late Feb

Location: Grindavik, Iceland

(SOUNDBITE) (English) LOCAL RESIDENT, RANNVEIG GUDMUNDSDOTTIR, SAYING: "So the situation in Grindavik is quite uncomfortable right now. Everyone is sleep-deprived because the earth is constantly moving all day, all night, some earthquakes are bigger than others. Some are 3.1 some are 4.2. Today we had a big one of 5.4, things fell down on the shelves in the house even though I had laid many things down."

Scientists have called it an unprecedented seismic event

which may well end in a lava show

Authorities put an emergency plan in place in 2020

(SOUNDBITE) (English) ICELAND GEOSURVEY (ISOR) GEOPHYSICIST, SIGRIDUR KRISTJANSDOTTIR, SAYING: "It will be a small eruption, we would see these fissures on the surface. It would be kind of a nice, picturesque firewall coming through cracks in the surface. It would not be a large explosive eruption because there is no glacier water involved so it would be kind of nice to look at, probably."

Video Transcript

RANNVEIG GUDMUNDSDOTTIR: So the situation in Grindavik is quite uncomfortable right now. Everyone is sleep deprived because the Earth is constantly moving all day, all night.

Some earthquakes are bigger than others. Some are 3.1 some are 4.2. Today, we had a big one 5.4. Things fell down on the shelves in the house even though I had laid many things down.

SIGRIDUR KRISTJANSDOTTIR: It will be a small eruption. We would see these fissures on the surface would be a kind of nice, picturesque firewall coming through cracks in the surface. It would not be a large explosive eruption, because there's no glacier water involved. So it would be kind of nice to look at, probably.