LIFEGUARDS and lifeboat crews joined forces to rescue three teenagers trapped on a sandbank which had a deep gulley.

The three boys found themselves surrounded by the incoming tide, just off the lifeboat station at Rhyl at about 1.50pm today (August 18). There was a 5ft muddy gulley filled behind them which shut off their exit from the sandbank.

After spotting their plight, one RNLI lifeguard ran down the beach to the shoreline and then waded, up to his waist, across the gulley.

A call for back-up was made and Rhyl Lifeboat volunteers were paged by the UK coastguard at Holyhead.

The lifeguard was able to get the group on to the highest part of the sandbank, which was just covering their knees, as the lifeboat arrive.

All three teenagers and the lifeguard were then taken on board the inshore lifeboat and were returned to their waiting relatives, safe and well.

Martin Jones, coxswain at Rhyl lifeboat station, said: 'The RNLI always advises beach-goers to chat with the lifeguards about the tides and weather. Always swim at a lifeguarded beach, read and observe the flags put out by the lifeguards, and the beach can be a safe place to enjoy'.

"On this occasion, the RNLI lifeguards were able to see the situation developing, and advised the party to stay on the sandbank until the lifeboat arrived. If they had decided to try to cross the gulley, the water would have been quite deep, and as they were fully clothed, there could have been more dangerous consequences."

A spokesperson from Rhyl Coastguard Team added: "A lifeguard entered the water to swim over to them and due to the number of people and the flooding tide, the coastguard were informed and the local coastguard team paged. Rhyl Lifeboat were also tasked to provide assistance.

"Whilst the teams were assembling the situation was resolved and all persons returned safely to shore."