BLACK SUNDAY: The day five died and 200 were washed out to sea at Bondi

This week we look back to the biggest rescue to hit Bondi Beach.

On Sunday February 6, 1938 three huge waves rolled into Bondi in quick succession and took both bathers and surfers by surprise.

It is estimated 200 surfers were swept out to sea and the waves triggered a mass rescue which became known as Black Sunday.

Five people drowned on the day and 35 of the surfers were unconscious when rescued.

On Black Sunday, more than 70 rescuers used belts, rubber floats and anything else they could grab to help panicked swimmers get back to shore.

Eyewitnesses reported waves that resembled tidal waves, but experts now believe that the sudden backwash of huge seas at Bondi that day was caused by a flash rip.

Now 80 years on, we remember the largest mass rescue to occur in Australia.