WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — A New Zealand volcanic island has erupted in a tower of ash and steam while dozens of tourists were exploring the moon-like surface, killing five people and leaving many more missing.
The site was still too dangerous hours later for police and rescuers to search for the missing. Both New Zealand and overseas tourists were among the injured.
Most of the 18 who survived were injured and some had suffered severe burns. Royal Caribbean said guests from its cruise ship Ovation of the Seas had been visiting the island.
My god, White Island volcano in New Zealand erupted today for first time since 2001. My family and I had gotten off it 20 minutes before, were waiting at our boat about to leave when we saw it. Boat ride home tending to people our boat rescued was indescribable. #whiteisland pic.twitter.com/QJwWi12Tvt— Michael Schade (@sch) December 9, 2019