An arrest has been made following an Armed Offenders Squad callout in Hawera this morning.

Police were first called to a report of a man damaging another person's car on Waihi Rd about 8.40am.

A police spokeswoman said the alleged offender had what appeared to be a firearm.

Cordons were put in place and the Armed Offenders Squad (AOS) was deployed.

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The AOS searched an address on Waihi Rd but did not locate the alleged offender or firearm, and cordons were stood down.

"Police continued to make inquiries in the area and arrested a man at an address in the Okaiawa area shortly before 2pm."

An air rifle was recovered at the Okaiawa address, she said.

A 27-year-old man will appear in Hawera District Court on July 21, charged with wilful damage.

The cordons had been in place at Waihi Rd and Maire St, Rimu St and Rata St, and Waihi Rd and Glover Rd.

Shortly after 11am Waihi Rd resident Shona Garrett told the Herald she heard banging outside her house early this morning.

She had looked out the window to see several armed police had arrived with dogs.

"That's when I realised they had cordoned off the street all around us."

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She said police had moved from Turuturu Rd towards an area of Waihi Rd, where they had remained for at least 30 minutes.

"They certainly haven't moved. They are very fixated on that point," she said at the time.

"There's not much movement going on. It's very, very quiet, which is quite eerie."

Garrett said the road was usually very busy because it was the main route through town but traffic was being diverted away.

Normally the road would be quite loud, that was why it was so eerie, she said.

The town has a population of about 12,000.