Fire breaks out on vessel near Dubai's Burj Al Arab

Smoke billows from ship off the coast of Dubai as beach-goers look on

A fire broke out on a yacht off the coast of Dubai, near landmark Burj Al Arab, on Friday.

Smoke billowed from the vessel a little before 2pm.

Dubai Civil Defence rescued three passengers from the yacht before extinguishing the blaze.

They said the fire appeared to have been caused by engine failure and fuel leakage that then ignited. Police said nobody was hurt.

On Friday, beach-goers were left stunned by the sight, gathering by the shore to watch what was happening.

It was not long before people began posting pictures to social media and sharing their concern for those on board.

"Huge fire on a ship near Burj Al Arab, Dubai. Hope everyone on board is OK," said Kiera Doherty on Twitter. "Looks pretty serious."

Firefighters aboard ships equipped with hoses were soon seen circulating the vessel and tackling the blaze.

Eyewitnesses reported smoke decreasing by 2.30pm.