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“We are on the alert should the situation change”

23. mars 2010 kl. 22:41

“We are on the alert should the situation change”

Vignir Siggeirsson horse trainer lives with his family at Hemla II in the west part of Landeyjar. The farm is situated quite close to the glacier mountain Eyjafjallajökull, where the volcanic action is. Eiðfaxi called Vignir on the phone to check on how people in this area are doing.

When and how did you become aware of the eruption?
”It was not until the Civil Defense called us on Saturday night, and announced this to us and at the same time telling us that we needed to leave our home and go to Hvolsvöllur. We had not noticed anything out of the ordinary here at home, although we live in considerable closeness to the glacier.”

What does it feel like to have to act quickly and leave your home with the whole family in the middle of the night?
”Certainly that was a little out of the ordinary. But we stayed calm and this all proceeded very well, although there was a lot of traffic in the area. People in this area had been prepared very well for an incident like this, meetings had been held here and four years ago there was a rehearsal on how to react to a volcanic eruption. So everyone was well prepared and vacating went well. There is great security involved in how professionally these matters are being handled and the proceedings of the eruption is being closely monitored.”

How are the animals staying outside doing?
”They are doing fine. They have not noticed anything unusual. From our farm here at Hemla we can only see white smoke or evaporation but no sparks of fire. No ash has fallen here, although yesterday morning I heard of people who noticed a small amount of ash on their cars. So of course we are on the alert, should the situation change and will make the necessary arrangements accordingly.”

Do you think that mount Katla will be erupting as a consequence?
“Certainly nobody knows that. History tells us that there is likelihood for that to happen. But we will deal with that when and if that happens. Both horses and people in the area are calm at the moment, and the only inconvenience was the evacuation on Sunday. Although we were allowed to make a short tip home on Sunday morning to feed the horses and then later on that day we were all back home at Hemla.”