The CEO of Icelandair has stated that the storm in December, and the subsequent closure of Reykjanesbraut, cost the company approximately ISK 1 billion ($7 million / €6.4 million). Thousands were left stranded at Keflavík Airport due to the closure.
Best fourth-quarter performance since 2015
Yesterday, Icelandair published its consolidated financial report for 2022. The report states that the company’s full-year EBIT amounted to ISK 2.7 billion ($19 million / €17.4 million), which is an improvement by ISK 19 billion ($136 / €124 million), and that strong revenue generation resulted in the best fourth quarter performance since 2015. “In 2022, we brought around 740 thousand tourists to Iceland and recruited around 1,000 employees,” the report reads.
The report also notes that weather disruptions in December negatively affected results for the fourth quarter of 2022: “It was negatively affected by significant disruptions in the flight schedule caused by weather conditions in Iceland in December, in the midst of the pre-Christmas travel period. The negative effect on EBIT is estimated around $7 million (ISK 1 billion / €6.4 million) in lost revenue cost of leasing extra aircraft, and increased passenger-related costs. [The] majority of the negative effect is related to the closure of the main road between the capital area and KEF airport while the airport itself was operational,” Bogi Nils Bogason, CEO of Icelandair, was quoted as saying.
Bogi concluded by saying that following “the crisis,” a thorough review had been performed by the Ministry of Infrastructure in order to prevent similar events in the future.
Thorough review by the Ministry of Infrastructure
As noted by RÚV, Reykjanesbraut was closed on December 19 and 20 of last year. Thousands of tourists were left stranded at Keflavík Airport during the storm.
The working group of the Minister of Infrastructure submitted a report on the matter in late January, which states, among other things, that it would not have been possible to completely prevent the closure of the Reykjanesbraut, considering the weather conditions during the period in question, and the statutory roles of the Icelandic Road Administration and the police in ensuring the safety of drivers.