Australian mother and daughter named as volcano victims -media

Australian mother and daughter named as volcano victims -media

SYDNEY, Dec 11 (Reuters) – A mother and daughter have become the first Australians to be named as victims of New Zealand’s volcano disaster after the family was informed by authorities early on Wednesday, media said.

Brisbane woman Julie Richards, 47, and her daughter Jessica, 20, had been confirmed dead after Monday’s explosion at White Island, family friend John Mickel said on the Sky News program.

The two left for New Zealand last Monday and were due home this weekend.

The death toll stands at six, with eight others presumed deceased on the island, which is still too dangerous for rescuers to visit.

There were 47 people on White Island at the time of the eruption. Twenty-four of those were from Australia, nine from the United States, five from New Zealand, four from Germany, two each from China and Britain and one from Malaysia. (Reporting by Wayne Cole; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

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