TODAY |

Police working 'as quickly as possible' to return Whakaari/White Island victims to their families

There's a long process to formally identify the victims of the Whakaari/White Island disaster, but police say they're working as quickly as possible to do so.

Your playlist will load after this ad

It was an emotional time for many of them today as they were taken close to the island for a ceremonial blessing. Source: 1 NEWS

Officials say they're following an internationally approved disaster management identification (DVI) process.

"The victims and their families are our priority but we also have important obligations," Deputy Commissioner John Tims says.

"We must work on behalf of the Coroner to ensure correct identification."

Read More
Whakatāne after Whakaari: How the town is responding to the tragedy

It's a five-stage process including a post-mortem and ante-mortem - where information about the missing person is brought in from outside, such as dental records and fingerprints from official records.

After everything is completed and the identity is confirmed by the coroner, the family are advised.

"This is a long and complex process and we are working as quickly as possible to return loved ones to their families," Mr Tims says.

Read More
'It's not over yet' - Search continues for two missing bodies after Whakaari/White Island eruption

Six bodies were recovered from White Island yesterday, with two bodies believed still on the island and eight other people confirmed dead from Monday's disaster.