Four tourists have been rescued by the coast guard in Howth after getting trapped on a sand bank off the Dublin coast last night.

The Howth-based coast guard was alerted to the tourists by a paddle boarder. They were stuck between Burrow Beach and Portmarnock Beach, while the tide was rising.

In a statement released this afternoon, the coast guard said they had been swimming to a sand bar, but with a fast-incoming spring tide, the sand bar quickly began to disappear.

One swimmer had been evacuated by the paddle boarder and the other three were taken aboard the coast guard boat and brought back to Burrow Beach. None of the people involved required any further medical attention.

Around 10 minutes after the tourists were rescued, the sand bar was no longer visible, according to the statement.

"We are grateful to the paddle boarder for his actions is helping resolve the incident quickly," the statement added.

"A key message this weekend is if you do see someone who you are only slightly concerned about their safety on the coast, call 999 or 112 and ask for the coast guard.

"If you can and it's safe to do, stay there until the rescue team arrives. As last night's incident shows every minute counts when someone gets into trouble on the water."