Tourists jump into river to escape blaze on boat
Tour boat passengers jumped into the River Thames to escape a fire on their World War Two-era amphibious vehicle near London's Houses of Parliament yesterday.
A London Fire Brigade spokesman said up to 30 tourists were rescued from the water and from the boat after the fire broke out just before lunchtime. No one was seriously hurt.
Children as young as six were scooped from the water following the blaze.
Londoner Elissa Wood was on the tour with her parents, who were visiting from Australia, when the fire broke out at the front of the vessel.
Speaking at the scene, she said she noticed smoke billowing from the boat as they travelled past Westminster.
"We saw the tour guide and the captain look at each other like 'this is a real problem' and then they encouraged us to put life jackets on and jump off," she said.
"It was really hot. The flames were really hot and it was confusing.
"We weren't sure what was happening so it was scary."