Details of the man who fired a crossbow, holed himself up into a house and entered into hours of negotiations in New Plymouth on Saturday have been revealed.

Police were called to the address in Okato, where a man reportedly fired the weapon during a family dispute yesterday afternoon.

In a statement, Taranaki area commander Keith Borrell described how it took hours after they'd been alerted to the incident at 4:10pm on Saturday afternoon to make an arrest.

"Police were deployed to the address and communicated with the man, appealing for him to come outside and informing him that he was under arrest," he said. "The man refused to comply and made verbal threats to officers."

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Due to the "escalating nature" of the incident he said the Armed Offenders Squad was deployed.

While the other occupants in the house were able to leave, and none were injured in the shooting, police continued to negotiate with the man inside for several hours.

Borrell said officers attempted to "convince him to leave the house on his own accord".

However, it wasn't till 2am, when police were able to enter the house using gas, that the 39-year-old man was arrested and taken into custody without further incident.

The man was taken to hospital where he was assessed and found to have no injuries.

Police investigations are ongoing and formal charges were yet to be laid.