Young couple 'lucky' after being washed out to sea
A QUEENSLAND couple have had a lucky escape after being hit by a freak wave in thigh-deep water on the Tweed Coast.
Tweed/Byron Police Acting Inspector Darren McCaughey said the couple had been wading on a sandbank at the unpatrolled Dreamtime Beach when they were hit by a large wave about 2.30pm this afternoon.
The wave dislodged the sandbar, washing the couple into the ocean, Insp McCaughey said.
"The beach was subject to large, persistent swells and rips," he said.
He said the woman was able to scramble onto rocks at the treacherous headland, while the man, 22, was washed further out to sea.
A witness unknown to the couple alerted emergency services and the man was rescued from the northern side of the headland and later taken to the Tweed Hospital for observation.
There had been Surf Life Savers on duty on the northern beach, out of sight of Dreamtime Beach. The northern beach had been closed to swimming due to the conditions.
Miraculously, both avoided serious injury.
Surf Life Savers have repeatedly called for swimmers to avoid unpatrolled areas and only swim between the red and yellow flags, particularly after the three deaths at the headland since 2015, two of which involved adults trying to save children.
Insp McCaughey said given the tragic history of the headland, it was "fantastic" for the couple to be brought to shore in a stable state.
The Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter also attended the scene.