Person escapes houseboat fire under the Westway in Paddington

The barge alight beneath the Harrow Road flyover. Picture: Jonny Rose

The barge alight beneath the Harrow Road flyover. Picture: Jonny Rose - Credit: Archant

Around 35 firefighters and a fire boat tackled a blaze on a houseboat under the Harrow Road flyover in Paddington this afternoon.

At least half of the boat was alight when firefighters arrived shortly after 12.15pm, sending plumes of smoke up from the Grand Union Canal to Harrow Road and the Westway. Buses were diverted for a period.

Three fire engines and two fire rescue units were scrambled to the scene, alongside the fire boat and firefighters, who spent more than half an hour getting the blaze under control and preventing the vessel from sinking.

One person escaped before the brigade arrived, and is not thought to have been injured.

The cause of the fire, which broke out opposite the Sheldon Square office development, just north of Paddington station, is under investigation.