Police are continuing to support the victims of the Whakaari/White Island eruption along with the whānau of those who died or have not yet returned.

The search for Hayden Marshall-Inman, 40, and Australian tourist Winona Langford, 17, who both remain missing since the eruption, was suspended on December 24 however police said they had staff available and ready to respond if any new information became available.

Acting District Commander Inspector Warwick Morehu said police remained in close liaison with mana whenua, namely Ngati Awa and other coastal iwi from the Matatatua waka.
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"We are also working closely with the key agencies involved since the disaster with the aim of keeping all safe as the response to the disaster continues," he said.

The police investigation on behalf of the Coroner was continuing, in parallel with the WorkSafe New Zealand investigation.


"Many of our staff involved worked long hours during the operation and we are ensuring they are receiving the appropriate wellbeing, support, and rest," Morehu said.

Authorities have not returned to the island since the recovery mission was completed.

Forty seven people were on the active volcano when it erupted on December 9. The official death toll stands at 17 with two missing.

A rahui placed on the island was lifted on December 29, and MPI has issued a warning notice advising people not to eat kai moana taken within a 1km zone of the island's coast.