Strong earthquake swarm 80 km north of Kolbeinsey Island

During the night of 26-March-2017 there was an strong earthquake swarm about 80 km north of Kolbeinsey Island. This is around 250 km from the coast in north Iceland. It is not clear what is happening in this location, since this area has been seeing higher than usual earthquake activity in recent months. This is the largest earthquake swarm so far to take place.


The earthquake swarm as it appears on Icelandic Met Office maps. Green stars are earthquakes with magnitude above 3,0. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Largest earthquakes in this swarm had the following magnitudes. Magnitude 4,6 (EMSC Information here), magnitude 5,0 (EMSC information here), magnitude 4,8 (EMSC information here). The largest earthquakes where not felt due to distance from the coast. It is not possible due to distance to see if there is an eruption taking place at this location. All harmonic tremor get lost due to distance from nearest SIL station. A really large eruption might slightly appear on tremor plot on Icelandic Met Office website, at the moment that has not happened.


The magnitude 5,0 earthquake as it appeared on my geophone in Böðvarshólar. This image is under Creative Commons Licence, please see CC licence for more details.


The magnitude 5,0 earthquake as it appeared on my geophone in Heklubyggð. This image is under Creative Commons Licence, please see CC licence for more details.

It is difficult to know if an earthquake activity is continuing in this area or not. Since the distance from nearest SIL stations does not allow for micro-earthquakes to be detected properly or at all.

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This entry was posted in Earthquakes, Kolbeinsey Island, Kolbeinsey Ridge, Monitoring, Swarm. Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Strong earthquake swarm 80 km north of Kolbeinsey Island

  1. Jack says:

    Mount Frimann acting up again?

  2. Jack McIlveen says:

    USGS has them as following :
    at 12:24 4.6
    at 1:07 5.0
    at 1:48 4.9

  3. Cornelia Spindler says:

    Could be a reason like this one? Jon, I found this in my alerts. Reason is methane. There are lots of these methane outputs in the North Sea, as I understood. Dangerous stuff though. http://hisz.rsoe.hu/alertmap/index2.php?area=eu

  4. Richard Oliver says:

    Given the nature of the swarm it would appear that volcanics are not in the equation. It looks like simple strike/slip movement along the ridge line. Probably due to the rotational shear in that region.

  5. Ron law says:

    All news is a distraction from planet x Nibiru wormwood whatever you would like to call it. The arrival date of planet x will be 7/10/2017! Please investigate for you and your family where you should be
    The government’s of the world will not tell you that would cause civil unrest!!

    • Please stop this nonsense. If there would be a planet on our Earth path we would already feel it due to gravity influence.

      Government is mostly clueless (have you seen the people that are elected?).

  6. Jack McIlveen says:

    Like there is not enough craziness in the news we get this guy!

  7. Gwen says:

    Is the actual line of earthquakes in the Vatnajökull area cooling of the dike from 2014?

  8. Jack McIlveen says:

    USGS is reporting :
    Friday 31.03.2017 05:25:24 PM 52.695 32.294 10.0 km 5.3 Reykjanes ridge

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