Skip to main content

Short-term earthquake risk models results in Iceland

Our short-term earthquake risk detection models have been developed to detect high-risk time-windows before major earthquakes occur in Iceland. The technology has been successfully tested, and alerts were sent to the Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) before some of the recent major earthquakes, including Oct 20 2020, Feb 24 2021 M5.7 and July 31 2022 M5.4. These models can be used to increase Iceland's resiliency in the forthcoming earthquakes by providing advance warning and more accurate risk assessments, which can help communities prepare and take necessary precautions to protect themselves and their property.

Gaps in the traditional earthquake early warning system

Iceland is a seismically active country, known for its active volcanoes and geothermal activity. Earthquakes are a common occurrence in Iceland, with the majority of the earthquakes occurring near major cities. The epicenters of these earthquakes are near major cities, which can make the traditional earthquake early warning system in Iceland less effective. This is because the P-waves characteristics in these areas can cause the system to issue alerts too late for people to take appropriate action. This also means that there is a risk transfer gap, as the current system does not allow for predefined action plans to be put in place. The recent earthquakes that occurred near major cities in Iceland, such as Reykjavik, highlight the limitations of the current early warning system in the country.