Helicopter tour companies Volcanic Air, Kahu NZ and Aerius will face trial in Auckland District Court next week, along with 6 other organizations and individuals.
3 company representatives, who appeared before the judge before the trial, accepted the accusation that they were responsible for security violations in the incident where 22 tourists died.
The companies admitted that they were insufficient to ensure the safety of tourists and personnel participating in the trip from different countries of the world.
A fine of up to $927,000 for each company and $300,000 for each responsible individual.
Touristic trips organized despite warnings are discussed
Allowing tourists to visit is controversial, despite experts warning that “seismic activity has increased in the area” two weeks before the eruption.
On the island, which is a popular tourist destination, Whakaari Volcano erupted in 2019, 22 tourists died and 25 people were seriously injured in the disaster.