Officials have reassured the public of the safety of Whanganui after the fatal shooting of a 27-year-old man with suspected gang affiliations in the suburb of Castlecliff yesterday.

The shooting occurred on Puriri St about 9.40am.

Whanganui Acting Mayor Jenny Duncan told NewstalkZB the west coast city was very quiet overnight as expected and wanted to reassure the community of the area's safety.

"We have a strong police presence here," Duncan said.

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"Everything is quiet and in hand. We have full confidence in what is happening."

The police area commander was keeping everyone updated, she said.

"I just think it is going to be business as usual for most people," she said.

"It is a one-off event, it is not random. We do anticipate that it is quite isolated.

"We are a quiet community, the event was unexpected and the police will just continue to conduct the investigation."

Police said this morning a scene examination was underway and extra officers remained in the area.

Cordons would likely remain in place until later today or tomorrow, Detective Inspector Ross McKay said.

Yesterday, McKay said police were doing everything possible to find the people responsible for the fatal shooting.

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"This is not a random attack. The victim, a 27-year-old man, and the offenders are known to each other and are known to police."

It was believed the parties involved have links or associations to gangs, he said.

"As this conflict is between two parties known to each other, we do not believe there is associated risk to members of the general public.

"We want the Whanganui community to feel comfortable that there is a strong police presence in the area working hard to investigate this crime."

Police officers from Manawatu and Taranaki have been called to Whanganui to work on the case.