Two women have been hospitalised after near drownings in the Illawarra at the weekend.
A woman got into trouble at Little Austinmer beach yesterday - with a quick thinking surfer coming to her aid.
She was brought to shore semi-conscious before being raced to hospital.
A second woman was also had to be hospitalised after being swept out into a rip around 250 metres south of the flags at Wollongong City Beach.
Warm sunny conditions saw a return to crowds flocking to Illawarra beaches.
Lifesavers recorded 17 rescues along the Illawarra beaches, including treating a number of people suffering marine stings from visiting blue bottles.
Rescues were recorded at Thirroul, Woonona, Fairy Meadow, North Wollongong and Wollongong City beaches.