Iceland says subglacial eruption is underway

Published: .
Updated: .

Iceland's Meteorological Office says a subglacial eruption is underway at the Bardarbunga volcano, which has been rattled by thousands of earthquakes over the past week.

Vulcanologist Melissa Pfeffer says sesmic data indicates that lava is melting ice beneath the Vatnajokull glacier.

She said it was not clear when, or if, the eruption would melt the ice and send steam and ash into the air.

Iceland raised its aviation alert for the volcano to the highest level of red on Saturday, indicating an eruption that could cause "significant emission of ash into the atmosphere."

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)