The life-or-death moment two students were winched to safety by a brave helicopter crew after getting swept out to sea was captured on camera.
Five Falmouth University students fell victim to the waves and were caught in a rip current just off the Cornwall coast after taking a dip on Sunday afternoon.
Four of the group managed to beat the tides to make it to the shore but swiftly realised that one friend had been left behind.
Their mate jumped straight back into the sea to save them — and soon got into difficulty too.
Thankfully their friends called emergency services and the Newquay Coastguard Rescue Team managed to spot the terrified swimmers in a search and rescue helicopter.
A helicopter camera captured the moment a brave crew member put his life on the line and lowers himself into the waves to save the pair.
In incredible scenes he grabs the swimmers, but a sudden wave slams into the group, dispersing them.
As the pair are swept away from the cable their rescue volunteer uses incredible strength to grab hold of them before they are pulled further out to sea.
They hold on for dear life as they are winched up into the helicopter to safety.
All five swimmers were then taken to the Royal Cornwall Hospital, Treliske for medical treatment.
Emma Watkins from UK Coastguard advised anyone planning on a swim to think twice.
She said: “At this time of year, it is out of season. No lifeguards are on duty.
“This serves as a reminder that the sea has hidden dangers and people should definitely think twice before entering the water.”