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Hamilton to offer ‘every support possible’

The New Zealand flag and Hamilton City Council flag flying at half-mast.

Hamilton Mayor Paula Southgate says Hamilton is standing by to offer “every support possible” to assist the families and friends of White Island victims.

Eight victims rescued from Whakaari White Island yesterday are now in Waikato Hospital in Hamilton. Mayor Southgate said the city will leave nothing to chance to ensure their friends and family get the support they need.

She expected some people were already travelling to the city to be with loved ones.

“We are desperately sorry for those impacted by this disaster and Hamilton will do whatever it takes to provide comfort and practical support,” she said.

“On behalf of the city, I want to extend our very, very sincere condolences to all those who have been caught up in such a tragic event. Those involved have been through a terrifying ordeal and our city and Hamiltonians will do all we can to help in the days and weeks ahead.”

Mayor Southgate said the city has also extended an offer of help to Western Bay of Plenty councils.

“At the moment, we are just working through logistics and being very mindful that any support we offer must the right support, targeted in the right way.”

Hamilton City Council offices will join the rest of New Zealand in lowering the New Zealand flag to half-mast, effective immediately.

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