An ambulance called to an assault could not treat those involved out of safety for their staff.

St John was called to an assault on a Mckenzie St address in Whakatāne by a member of the public.

A spokeswoman said staff did not treat any patients "due to the nature of the event" and instead called police.

Police were called to the address at 7.30pm regarding a person being assaulted and arrived 20 minutes later.

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A police media spokeswoman said it was not yet clear what the nature of the assault was.