An RNLI crew from the South East has won a Volunteer Ireland award.
Brothers David and Fergal along with crew member Alec from Tramore RNLI - received the Safety and Emergency Services award.
In January, the crew were called out to a rescue and recovered a man in his 50's who was floating in the water.
He was transferred to University Hospital Waterford and recovered in ICU.
Speaking to Beat News, David McGrath says a lot more people are taking to the water since the pandemic:
"We had in excess 20 call outs this year, nearly double what we normally do.
"There are a lot of people swimming getting into difficulty this year, I suppose it's because of COVID.
"There are a lot of restrictions which is making people take to sea swimming and there are a lot more people using the water."
Crew member David gives advice for those swimming this Christmas:
"You need to take the conditions into consideration, particularly the temperature of the water. The water is typically about 8 degrees at this time of year.
"Water takes away your your body core temperature 25 times quicker than air so people should limit the amount of time they spend in the water and not over extend themselves."
For more information on water safety visit www.swimireland.ie