Iceland Mag

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Iceland Mag


Visitors complain over low-flying drones in Dimmuborgir lava field

By Staff

  • Dimmuborgir A lava field with magnificient and dramatic natural formations, Dimmuborgir is one of the most popular destinations at Mývatn lake. Photo/The Icelandic Environment Agency

Travellers who were visiting Dimmuborgir lava field at Mývatn lake in North Iceland complained that their experience had been ruined by an aerial drone which hovered over their head while they were trying to enjoy the spectacular beauty of the site. According to a press release from the Icelandic Environment Agency the drone hovered only a few meters above the travellers.

Tranquility destroyed by drones

Drone over Dimmuborgir, small

Small and Noisy One of the drones over Dimmuborgir Photo/Environment Agency

The travellers said the harassment by a low-flying drone conflicted with the image of the site and the marketing of Icelandic wilderness. The regional manager for the Environment Agency said he had noticed there were unusually many drones in Dimmuborgir and around Mývatn lake over the weekend. The large number had caused some concern among locals.

The Environment Agency points out that drones cause both visual and sound pollution, disturbing the tranquility of sites. The Environment Agency can ban the use of drones to protect bird life. There are no rules which ban the use of drones in Dimmuborgir or at Mývatn, and current legislation does not put limits on how low drones can fly. The agency therefore urges people to show common sense and operate their drones in a respectful manner. 

Read more: What rules govern the use of drones for aerial photography in Iceland?

New regulations on the use of drones were passed in February. The Icelandic Transport Authority is currently working on amendments to these rules, including a minimum flight height for drones.

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