Three people have drowned after being swept into the surf at Port Kembla, south of Wollongong.
Police are continuing to sweep the foreshore in case any more people were taken out to sea.
NSW Police said a group of people were standing on rocks near an area known as Hill 60 when a large wave knocked them into the water just after 10pm on Friday.
A police search with rescue helicopters and local lifeguards led to three bodies being pulled from the water on Friday evening.
Two of the bodies were winched from the sea by the air ambulance service, while one was found by the marine air launch.
The men have not been formally identified, but police believe two of them, aged 45 and 49, are from Green Valley and from the same family.
The other is believed to be a 69-year-old from Campsie.
Two other people were swept into the water but made it back to safety.
Acting Superintendent Gordon Dunlop said on Saturday it was “a timely warning to everybody”.
“The location that people do fish in on these outcrops where it is very close to the sea and on a point or a headland, unfortunately the weather does change sometimes and the waves can become quite dangerous for those on the surface of the rocks,” he told reporters.
Police are still trying to recover the men’s personal possessions from the water.
A/Supt Dunlop said he didn’t believe it would be the last time police attended a scene like this at the location.
“We will be here, unfortunately, it is just a fact of life that people enjoy something which has some dangers to it,” he said.