Ten students were treated for what are believed to be chemical burns at Tauranga Hospital overnight.

A police spokesperson said police were notified that a number of people were taken to Tauranga Hospital's Emergency Department with what were believed to be chemical burns just before 7.30pm on Saturday.

Northern Fire Communications shift manager Daniel Nicholson said firefighters were called to assist the students who were exposed to quicklime powder that gave them skin and eye irritation.

"They were decontaminated using the internal showers in the emergency department," said Mr Nicholson.


Calcium oxide (CaO), commonly known as quicklime or burnt lime, is a widely used chemical compound. It is a white, caustic, alkaline, crystalline solid at room temperature.

Three appliances, two from Tauranga and one from Greerton, and a Greerton HAZMAT team attended.

Bay of Plenty District Health Board spokeswoman Diana Marriott said 10 people were brought to Tauranga Hospital and were treated and discharged last night.