PASSERS-BY looked on in horror as a van burst into flames at a town centre crossroads.

The van was near traffic lights in Kingsway, Dovercourt, when it caught on fire on Friday.

Witnesses said the van had its hazard lights on and appeared to have broken down.

One fire engine from Dovercourt was called to the scene at 4.43pm and put out the blaze by 4.57pm.

Greg Potter, who was walking through the town, said: “I noticed it had light smoke coming from the engine.

“This very quickly became fairly heavy black smoke and then you could see burning particles dropping out underneath the engine on to the road.”