Thursday, 06 Aug 2020

Terrible Tragedy; Volcano in New Zealand Erupts, Dozens of Tourists Experience Serious Burns


Photo : InternetPhoto : Internet

Three Australians are believed to be among the five who died after a volcano erupted on the White Island of New Zealand, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said this morning.

Today's search team is desperately trying to reach eight people who have died on the island. Realizing the magnitude of the volcano disaster, officials said they did not expect to find survivors. Some of the victims may be Australian because 11 Aussies are still unknown.

Forty-seven people from Australia, Britain, the US, Malaysia and China were touring a 50km volcano from the northern island of New Zealand just as the volcano erupted giving off large ash and steam at 2.11pm on Monday.

Thirty-four people made it out of the island by helicopter or boat. Where all the survivors suffered various injuries. Up to thirty-one of the survivors are still being treated at the hospital.

Medics are even traumatized by the horrific injuries they witnessed, some victims reportedly suffered burns to 90 percent of their bodies.

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A New Zealander who was on a boat tour around the island told how he pulled people from the sea after they were furiously running into the water to avoid the heat of the eruption.

Geoff Hopkins, 50, said: "I don't think anyone comes who is not badly burned. Their faces are burnt on a massive scale. Their clothes look good, but when you cut it ... I've never seen blisters like that. '

He said his boat pulled 23 people and ran them back to the mainland, pouring water on their burns and covering them with blankets when they screamed in pain. He said five were in critical condition.

Thirteen Australians are known to be hospitalized and 11 unknown, Morrison told reporters in Sydney on Tuesday morning.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said this morning that police and emergency services focused on recovering eight bodies, which would bring the death toll to 13.


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