Hundreds of people and buses were disrupted in central Wellington this afternoon after a suspicious package was found on Lambton Quay.
Several buildings were evacuated, as police stood guard between Hunter Street and Cable Car Lane. Buses were diverted and officers stopped people from accessing Lambton Quay.
The police said a bomb disposal unit was sent to assess the package, with a robot used to explode it.
Anahera Ross, who was stuck in Grant Thornton House overlooking Lambton Quay, said police were operating a robot outside a McDonald's before she heard a major bang about 4pm.
"The paddy-wagon vehicle with the robot has been out," she said. "There were four or five police officers in the back of the van operating the machinery on Lambton Quay."
She said she could see numerous police cars in the cordoned-off area of the street.
The cordons and bus diversions in place this afternoon have now been lifted.
The police said they were satisfied the item posed no risk to people's safety but asked anyone with information about it to contact them.