Rescuers attempt to save stranded whale in Thames

Rescuers have launched an attempt to save a beached whale stuck on the River Thames in west London.

An RNLI crew has been sent to help free the whale at Richmond Lock.

It was first spotted by passersby at around 7pm and crowds have gathered to watch the rescue attempt.

The whale is believed to be a humpback.

Sky News reporter Lucia Binding, who is at the scene, said the small whale was lying on its belly.

"It looks lifeless at the moment. Half an hour ago it was thrashing around."

She said two fire engines had arrived to help RNLI volunteers and there are efforts to keep water flowing onto the whale’s blowhole, to keep it alive until it can be re-floated.

"Five rescue workers were earlier trying to get a yellow sheet underneath it – the first time failed and the whale got distressed and started thrashing around."

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