Three people were taken to hospital after eight people were rescued from a boat which 'exploded' on the Thames at Twickenham.

Firefighters and police were called to the fire on the Thames at Marble Hill, near Orleans Road, at around 3.15pm on September 21.

The London Ambulance Service also attended the scene to treat minor injuries and escorted those who needed medical assistance to hospital.

Alvaro Alvarez, an employee of Hammerton Ferry's, said: “When they came past us (at the ferry), they were waving at us and having fun.

Richmond and Twickenham Times:

Alvaro Alvarez (right) and Andy Spencer (left) of Hammerton Ferry's both helped to rescue people on the boat

“Ten Seconds later I heard a massive Bang.

“Honestly at first I thought they were the cannons from last week’s river race, but it wasn’t until I saw two of them literally get blasted into the water, that I knew how catastrophic it really was.”

Richmond and Twickenham Times:

Photos credited to Alvaro Alverez.

Mr Alqasem and his Hammerton's Ferry employer, Andy Spencer, also had to intervene as they feared the fire could spread to nearby trees and bushes.

Describing the moment where both men feared the worst, Mr Alvarez said: “So at one point the boat was flowing towards a 40ft tree, me and Andy knew that if we weren’t there, the tree could’ve burnt down along with the other trees beside it.

Richmond and Twickenham Times:

Photos credited to Alvaro Alverez.

“I was driving whilst he reached out for a rope on the burning boat.

“I could feel the heat, which was already unbearable about five metres away, so I don’t understand how Andy was fine.

“I reversed the boat towards the middle of the river where the boat eventually started to slow down.”