A helicopter crashed in central London after hitting a crane on top of a tower block by the River Thames.

The stricken aircraft cartwheeled to the ground and exploded into flames before crashing into a street during the rush hour.

Burning wreckage and aviation fuel covered the road as eyewitnesses reported seeing cars on fire and hearing people screaming.

The Metropolitan Police confirmed that the helicopter had come down. London Fire Brigade said the crash happened near Wandsworth Road in South Lambeth.