Volcanic tremor "significantly increased" after New Zealand eruption: Live updates

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1:46 p.m. ET, December 9, 2019

"No signs of life" on island, says PM

Jacinda Ardern says there have been no signs of life on White Island since the eruption.

Police rescue helicopters have carried out a number of reconnaissance flights over the island, but emergency personnel have not seen any survivors, the New Zealand PM told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday morning, local time.

Ardern said volcanic ash from the eruption still poses a hazard in the area, adding that a boat coming back from the island was covered with a half a meter (1.6 feet) of ash.

1:38 p.m. ET, December 9, 2019

International tourists and New Zealanders missing

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says New Zealanders and tourists from Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia are among those injured or missing following the White Island volcano eruption.

According to officials, 47 people were on the island at the time of the explosion.

New Zealand Police Superintendent Bruce Bird told reporters that five people have been confirmed dead, while eight are still missing. A further 31 are in hospital, while three have been treated and discharged.

1:09 p.m. ET, December 9, 2019

Happening now: PM Jacinda Ardern giving update

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is updating the nation on the latest regarding the White Island volcano eruption.

Ardern said two groups of people were on the volcano on Monday afternoon at the time of the eruption.

According to the emergency services, eight people are still missing.

1:00 p.m. ET, December 9, 2019

What to expect today

The sun has risen over New Zealand's White Island, a day after a deadly volcanic eruption there.

A New Zealand Defense Force ship is expected to deploy drones and observational equipment to assess the environment there today.

Overnight, authorities said a specialist disaster victim identification team was awaiting deployment in the nearby port town of Whakatane. Police have called it a "recovery operation."

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden arrived in Whakatane earlier, where she is due to meet with search and rescue authorities.

She is expected to give an update on the eruption at a press conference as the nation wakes up at around 7 a.m. local (1 p.m. ET).

Smoke can be seen rising from the volcano.
Smoke can be seen rising from the volcano. Photo: John Boren/Getty Images

12:55 p.m. ET, December 9, 2019

Here's what the eruption looked like yesterday

The volcano on White Island erupted at around 2 p.m. local time on Monday, sending plumes of thick black smoke and ash into the air.

Michael Schade and his family had been visiting the island, and left the scene just 20 minutes before the eruption. They fled the island on a boat which also evacuated some injured visitors.

12:48 p.m. ET, December 9, 2019

Here's what you need to know

On Monday, a volcano erupted on New Zealand's White Island, off the northern coast of North Island. Search and rescue operations are continuing today as authorities continue to gather information on the dead, injured, and missing.