A RESCUER who pulled two men from the sea after they jumped from the top of Durdle Door has spoken of the traumatic event in a bid to prevent others from following suit.

Michael Wiley, who lives in Southampton, said he was at the beauty spot on Saturday when he saw several people jumping from the 70ft arch into the sea, and is still coming to terms with what happened next.

"It's pretty raw," he said. "I haven't had much sleep - I've just been replaying it in my head.

"My housemate Dylan and I were visiting for the day and had planned to go paddleboarding.

"I used to teach coasteering at an activity centre and when I saw people climbing to the top of the arch and walking along the top of it I just knew it wasn't going to end well.

"They were just in swimming shorts - no wetsuit or shoes. People on the beach were whistling and cheering - it was ridiculous.

"When I saw the first guy walking across the arch my friend and I swam out in case we needed to rescue him, and someone on the beach laughed, saying 'oh there goes the lifeguard.'

"One older lady got quite upset and said she couldn't watch.

"The first guy who jumped was aged about 25 and seemed intoxicated. He hit the water and landed on his side; when he came to the surface he said 'I can't move my arms'.

"I grabbed him and swam back to the beach. He stood up and walked away but you could tell he was in shock and pain.

"He was later put into an ambulance on a spinal board and taken to hospital."

Mr Wiley said at least two more people separately jumped from the arch, followed by a 20 year-old man, who spoke little English.

"When I saw he was preparing to jump in just shorts and no wetsuit I again said to my mate, 'let's paddle out there just to be sure he's safe.'

"We waited underneath where he was about to land and saw him hit the water sideways. He didn't come back up.

"We instantly jumped off the paddleboard and dove down into the sea but couldn't see anything at first - the water was dark with seaweed - but after several attempts I saw something white at the bottom.

"About 10 other people were also trying to dive down and get to him - it was chaotic - nobody could reach him.

"I tried to dive down one final time and managed to grab his hand, but when I tried to push off the bottom of the seabed I just pushed against seaweed, there was nothing to purchase against.

"I don't know how I managed it but somehow I found the strength to drag him through the water up to the surface.

"The compression on my head and chest was so strong I nearly let go - I didn't think I was going to make it, he was completely limp, a dead weight.

"I took him back to the shore and these four amazing women doctors came running over and did CPR for around 20 minutes."

Michael added: "He had no pulse, he wasn't breathing and was completely purple; there was blood and foam coming out of his mouth.

"He literally had no life in him - his brother was crying and praying next to him. It was a pretty hard thing to witness.

"I was just in complete shock because I thought he was dead - I had to move away from the situation.

"When I returned about ten minutes later the four doctors had managed to get him breathing and bring him back to life - it was incredible.

"I'm eternally grateful to them because I would find this a lot harder to deal with if he didn't make it. The whole beach was crowding round his body before he was taken to hospital. He is only 20 years old."

Michael said another casualty was also taken to hospital that day, whom he believes had been rock climbing.

"I've never experienced anything like this," he added.

"There were so many of us trying to dive down (to save the man) - there was no way I was swimming away back to the beach knowing there was a body just laying on the sea bed.

"The people who jumped put so many lives at risk, including their own. I would urge people to know their limitations - there's a reason there are barriers at the top saying not to jump.

"Cold water shock on a hot day literally takes your breath away, it deflates your lungs and you lose all energy.

"There were families, kids of all ages on the beach just trying to enjoy their day who will have been left traumatised.

"People on the beach had been social distancing - the pictures make it look very crowded and people have been criticised for being there, but when the helicopter arrived there was no other option than for them to crowd together.

"I understand that people want to do something that's a bit of an adrenaline rush but people need to know their limits. "They (the people who jumped) were doing it so the moment could be captured on video - people were filming them. All of this just for the sake of a few Facebook likes.

"Part of me is angry about the situation but also I just hope he pulls through."

Yesterday roads to Durdle Door and Lulworth remained closed, while roads to West Bexington were also closed to prevent overcrowding as hot weather saw visitors flocking to Dorset's coastline.