Three teenage girls are lucky to be alive after being caught in a rip at a Wellington beach.
The girls aged 12 and 13 went swimming in their clothes at Titahi Bay and were quickly swept out to sea, when a bunch of off-duty life guards were called into action.
They were on the water in the rescue boat packing up after a pre summer training day when a member of the public alerted them to the emergency situation unfolding.
The girls were saved by 16-year-old Mac Van Dem Heuvel who was on the boat when it turned from practice, to life or death.
He told RNZ reporter Charlotte Cook it was his first serious rescue.