Owners of Whakaari volcano, whose eruption killed 22 people in 2019, found guilty of safety failures

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a court of New Zealand declared guilty this Tuesday owners of the Volcán Playwhose eruption in 2019 left 22 deadon one count of violating workplace safety laws.

The district court of Auckland ruled that the company Whakaari Management, owned by brothers Andrew, James and Peter Buttle, had not met its security obligations prior to a tourist visit to the volcano and will issue his sentence in February.

On December 9, 2019, Whakaari erupted while dozens of tourists were on or near the island, killing 22 people – on the spot and while they were being treated for burns – and leaving 25 injured.

During the reading of the decision, Judge Evangelos Thomas stressed today that Whakaari Management did not adopt the necessary measures to avoid “exposing any person to the risk of death or serious injury,” according to the hearing followed virtually by EFE.

The magistrate explained that Whakaari Management, the trust with which the Buttle brothers have managed the tourist activities related to this island in the hands of this family since 1936, had made a serious error by not seeking more information from experts to reduce risks linked to volcanic activity.

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