A man who fell into the Thames near Battersea Bridge on Monday was saved after a CCTV operator spotted him and raised the alarm.

Rescue teams pulled the man out of the freezing water just before midnight and took him to hospital.

The spot was one of a number of incidents where Wandsworth Council said its cameras had helped police and paramedics over the festive season.

Just before 1am on December 18, an operator spotted a woman threatening to jump into the river from Putney Bridge and called emergency services.

She was eventually persuaded to come down before being taken to hospital.

Some 20 minutes earlier the same camera operator saw a badly hurt woman lying in the middle of Balham High Road and immediately called for help.

She was taken to hospital before suffering further injuries.

The cameras also helped break up a New Year's Eve street fight in Clapham Junction and helped guide police to a man in Wandsworth High Street who was reported to have threatened people with a knife. A man has subsequently been arrested.

Councillor James Cousins, Wandsworth’s executive member for regeneration and community safety, said: “These incidents show just what a useful role our cameras play in helping to keep local people safe.

“They are of course there primarily to detect and combat crime and disorder, but they can also be used to monitor all sorts of situations from road accidents and traffic hold-ups to the kind of River Thames emergencies we saw recently.

“Not only have they been used to help solve crimes that have already been committed, they often help the police nip problems in the bud - before they develop into something more serious.”

A Wandsworth Council spokesman said its operators “work closely with police in their efforts to combat crime and disorder”.

He said: “Senior police officers in the borough have said that the council’s CCTV network provides evidence in around half of the cases that they bring to court.”

Wandsworth police have an over-ride facility which means they can take control of cameras.

The council operates more than 1,000 cameras across the borough, including around 700 on local housing estates.