A teen windsurfer has been pulled to safety by hero rescuers after being trapped by mega waves at sea.
Experienced surfer Jack Lyons, then 18 years old, had been caught off-guard by the overwhelming current and a thick sea fog when he went surfing in Porthcawl near Bridgend, South Wales in January.
He was swept away by a rip current and eventually trapped in the water beneath a cliff.
Footage released by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) in Porthcawl shows the hero volunteers braving the cold waves to rescue Jack.
The clip shows the challenging conditions at sea as the crew members rush through the two-metre-high waves in search of Jack in the water.
One rescuer is heard asking: "Where is he? Where is he?"
At the waves diminishes, Jack is seen fighting the current before the lifeboat steers closer to him.
The surfer manages to hold on the boat just as another wave hits them. He is then taken on board and sent back to the shore.
Another clip taken from on-shore shows the steep situation as the rescue vessel gets lifted up in the air at a near-vertical position while the brave crew members fight to keep everyone safe.
Jack, who has joined in offering a Christmas thank you to RNLI officers, recalled the moment and said: "I'm an experienced surfer, but things changed very quickly. I just couldn’t fight the current and could feel myself being pulled under.
"Seeing the lifeboat coming towards me is a sight I’ll never forget. I am eternally grateful to the crew of Porthcawl.
"I'm still in touch with them and will always remember what they did for me.
"At this time of year, more than ever, when family is so important, I will be reflecting on how things could have been very different.
"Due to the pandemic, this festive period for many will be different, but my family could have been facing a very different Christmas without me."
Chris Missen, who led the mission, said: "That rescue was one of the most challenging rescues I have ever taken part in, both physically and mentally, having to weigh up the risk to the boat and my crew versus the benefit of rescuing Jack."
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