Andrew Cotton, famed for surfing monster waves at the Praia do Norte spot, reassured followers on social media after breaking his back in a giant wave wipeout.

North Devon's big wave surfer Andrew Cotton has broken his back in a 'significant' wipeout in Nazaré.

The plumber from Braunton was captured on camera as he was swallowed by the monster wave at the surfing hotspot in Portugal.

Andrew - known to his friends as Cotty - posted on social media to his followers from his hospital bed, confirming he had broken his back.

His latest post on Facebook said: "So you've probably seen by now, I had a 'significant' wipeout today at Nazaré.

A screenshot from the video showing Andrew Cotton surfing a monster wave at the same spot in 2013.A screenshot from the video showing Andrew Cotton surfing a monster wave at the same spot in 2013.

"Split second decisions are neither right or wrong, but they can have consequences.

"I'm so grateful to everyone in the sea and on land who did a text book rescue to get me safely to hospital without further injury.

"I can't name them all but will thank everyone properly soon when I'm able to.

"I've got a dodgy vertebrae but no complications so will heal quickly. Looking forward to the rehab already.

"This footage is from @go_dids with @polikromia over on Insta while he was filming for Garrett McNamara."

The shocking video has been viewed tens-of-thousands of times, with many in the surfing community wishing Cotty a speedy recovery.

Cotty is famed for his big wave surfing - in 2013 he made headlines when he surfed an 80ft ride at the same spot in Praia do Norte.