Weather and road conditions
When planning your trip please look up weather and road conditions on www.road.is and www.safetravel.is. If the road is marked closed – it is closed. Don’t risk your life and safety by driving on a closed road.
The Road and Coastal Administration (Vegagerdin) has a telephone service to give information about road conditions and the weather, phone number: 1777. Information can also be found on their webside www.road.is about service on the roads, opening of mountain roads etc.
Weather in Iceland
Winter driving in Iceland
Get to know the special Icelandic traffic signs:
Roundabouts: In roundabouts, right-of-way goes to the driver in the inside lane. Always use the turn signal when exiting. Do not change lane after entering or when exit the two lane roundabout.
Gravel road – lower your speed: Loose gravel on road has caused a great number of accidents. Be prepared that paved road can suddenly changes to gravel. It is important to lower speed before it changes to gravel, otherwise you might consequently lose control of the vehicle. Show caution when approaching another car coming from the opposite direction by moving as far to the right as is safely possible. Flying pieces of gravel are likely to damage your windshields if speed is not reduced.
In Iceland we have a special traffic sign that indicates that you are approaching a gravel road, pavement changes to gravel or sudden icy conditions. Then you must slow down.
Passing on gravel roads
Single lane bridges: The car that approaches a single lane bridge first, crosses first. However, it is wise to stop and assess the situation every time.
In Iceland we have a special traffic sign that indicates that a single lane bridge is ahead.
Single lane bridges
Blind crest: Blind crest, hills and curves, where lanes are not separated, should be approached with caution. Please keep to the far right side of the road. A white arrow on a blue sign refers to the lane you should drive on.
In Iceland we have a special traffic sign that indicates that you are approaching a blind crest and should keep to the far right side of the road.
Unexpected road users: Be aware of livestock you see near the road can suddenly run across the road. It’s usually sheep but sometimes horses and even cattle can be in your path. It’s important to reduce speed as they may well run across the road in attempt to join other members of their group. This is common all over the country.
Life threatening animals
Off-road driving: It is illegal to drive off-road in Iceland. Only stay on roads and marked trails. Whilst traveling around the country, the highest respect for the Icelandic environment must be shown.
Winter tires: Winter tires are allowed all year round and summer tires are allowed all year round. The requirements for tires do not apply to the usage of winter or summer tires, only to tread depth of tires and to studded tires. The following rules apply:
1 November – 14 April: Studded tires allowed (but not compulsory).
Note: Minimum thread depth is 3mm.
15 April – 31 October: Studded tires prohibited.
Note: Minimum thread depth is 1,6mm.