Nominated for Bravery award
Jo Morris was surfing on Aberavon beach near Port Talbot, one afternoon in August 2019, when he spotted 3 young people struggling to escape a rip current near the pier. They had been dragged out to sea from an area of the beach known by regular swimmers for its dangerous rip currents. Waves were breaking over the pier, and one person was trying to scale it to get to safety.
In what were described as ‘horrendous’ sea and weather conditions, the 17 year old surfer paddled out to the two still in the water, offering one his surfboard leash and telling the other to climb on his board.
After 20 minutes paddling against the current, he got the pair to shore and the beach lifeguards confirmed the pair were uninjured. Without his brave act, the outcome could have been very different.
Jo’s father Clive, who is the local lifeboat operations manager, had just launched the lifeboat from further around the coast, due to the very high winds and waves, and is convinced that without Jo’s quick actions, there could have been 2 fatalities that day.
Jo has been surfing for 10 years, and is very experienced in difficult sea conditions, and a strong swimmer. He is also a trained pool lifeguard. Speaking after the event, he said he was just in the right place at the right time, and was thankful that everyone was safe.