Flash rip currents combined with strong winds saw several mass rescues last weekend - with one in Porthmeor involving 30 swimmers.

Cornwall's RNLI lifeguards are continuing to urge people to visit a lifeguarded beach if they head to the coast, as strong winds and large waves are predicted again this week.

The importance of this was highlighted on Sunday (August 23) when Porthmeor RNLI lifeguards rescued 30 bathers caught in a flash rip current and needed additional assistance from three surf school instructors.

Four lifeguards were rescue ready on water’s edge due to the incoming tide and strong winds producing large waves, and they chose to launch the rescue watercraft (RWC) in preparation.

Lifeguards and surf instructors paddled out to the bathers in difficulty and used their swell boards and rescue boards to keep people afloat and assist them to shore.

The RWC was also required to ferry bathers back to shore on the back of the sled and everybody was safely returned to shore and given safety advice.

James Symons, a Porthmeor senior lifeguard, said: "During the flooding tide, as a team we made sure we always had substantial numbers on proactive water patrols and were continuously using the PA system to advise bathers to stay waist to chest deep and always keep hold of your board or floatation device."

Perranporth RNLI lifeguards on Saturday (August 22) were involved in a rescue that likely saved the lives of three bathers who appeared to be in serious difficulty.

The lifeguards assessed the situation and decided to launch three means of rescue equipment to help each individual; the inshore rescue boat (IRB), rescue watercraft (RWC) and a rescue board all went to the scene as quickly as possible.

Tackling large dumping waves and strong rip currents as they approached the bathers, they collected one casualty each and returned them all safely to shore.

The young boy who was returned to shore on the rescue board appeared very shaken, saying: "I thought I was going to die."

Ollie Shilston, lead lifeguard supervisor, said: "With the current conditions we have been experiencing of strong winds and large surf, it is more important than ever to remember to visit a lifeguarded beach and stay in the red and yellow flagged areas if you are swimming or bodyboarding."

If you find yourself caught in a rip, follow this advice:

• Don’t try to swim against it, you will quickly get exhausted

• If you can stand, wade don’t swim

• Swim parallel to the shore until free of the rip and then head for shore

• Always raise your hand and shout for help

Beach visitors are advised not to enter the water if the red flag is flying and to remember that if there are no flags, there are no lifeguards.

If they see somebody in trouble, they should call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.