Iceland Mag

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Iceland Mag

Geology

Sharp earthquake off the coast of N. Iceland: Felt clearly in nearby towns, villages

By Staff

  • Mt Gjögur The northernmost mountain on Flateyjarskagi peninsula. Gjögurtá ness extends north of the 721 m (2366 ft) mountain. Photo/Oddurv, Creative Commons License.

  • Earthquakes in the past 48h The epicenter of the 3.7 magnitude quake is marked with a green star. Photo/IMO

  • All quakes in the past 48h The quakes map perfectly onto the major volcanic and fracture zones, from the Reykjanes peninsula in the SW, to the , the South Iceland Seismic Zone, extending to Katla volcano in Mýrdalsjökull. The quakes in Vatnajökull are all located in Öræfajökull, Grímsvötn and Bárðarbunga. The area around Askja, at the northern end of the Bárðarbunga system has been showing significant levels of activityTjörnes fracture zone off the north coast has also been very active. Photo/IMO

A sharp 3.7 magnitude earthquake was detected shortly after nine yesterday evening. The powerful tremor was followed by a swarm of about two dozen smaller aftershocks, including one significant 2.9 magnitude quake. The National Broadcasting Service reports that the quakes were felt over a wide area in North Iceland, including the towns of Siglufjörður, Ólafsfjörður and Akureyri.

According to the seismic monitoring system of the Icelandic Meteorological Office the quake hit at 21:10. Its epicenter was 14.7 km (9.1 mi) north west of Gjögurtá ness on the northern shore of Flateyjarskagi peninsula, at a significant depth of 13.2 km (8.2 mi). 

Read more: Scientists unsure what's going around Grímsey: Massive earthquake swarm might have peaked

The area where the quake took place is part of the Tjörnes fracture zone which is known for high levels of seismic activity. In February of this year a massive earthquake swarm which lasted several days and included thousands of quakes hit a submarine volcanic system in the Tjörnes fracture zone. 

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