June 23, 2024

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They will pay USD 6.1 million to blast victims – DW – 03/01/2024

They will pay USD 6.1 million to blast victims – DW – 03/01/2024

A New Zealand court on Friday (03/01/2024) ordered three tourism companies to pay a total of 10 million New Zealand dollars (6.1 million US dollars or 5.6 million euros) in compensation to victims. Waqari Volcano Eruption/white island in 2019.

Wakkari, one of New Zealand’s most active and touristic volcanoes, erupted on December 9, 2019, killing 47 people, most of them tourists, on or near the island, 22 of whom died. Disaster site Or they were treated for burns and 25 others were injured.

This Friday, Judge Evangelos Thomas of the District Court of Auckland, New Zealand, indicated in his ruling that each victim will receive approximately US$152,100.

The judge clarified that the amount will vary, taking into account a number of factors, such as whether the victims left the children in their care, the emotional distress of the children who lost a parent, whether families lost more than one loved one or survivors. family members, among others.

A “code” fee

“There is no way to measure the emotional damage that the survivors and victims’ families have suffered and continue to suffer. Compensation in a case like this cannot be more than symbolic recognition of that damage,” the magistrate agreed.

The family company that manages the private island on which the volcano is located, Whakaari Management Limited, must pay almost US$3 million to victims, while tour operator White Island Tours more than US$3 million and helicopter company Volcanic. Air Safaris, around $200,800.

Judge Thomas ordered the three companies and two tour companies, Areus and Kahu, to pay fines of US$610,000 and US$119,285 respectively.

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The largest fine in this trial for safety and health deficiencies linked to the Vaccari eruption fell on the Vaccari management, in the hands of brothers Andrew, James and Peter Buttle, whose trust manages tourism activities related to the island. Family since 1936.

In a separate ruling, the judge today fined GSN, the government body charged with monitoring volcanic activity in New Zealand, US$32,891 for its responsibility in the incident.

gs (efe, afp, reuters, ap)