Three people had to be rescued from a yacht and "bedded down" in a boathouse after running into trouble during a journey towards Belgium.
The coastguard was called from the vessel by passengers on board who had run aground near Margate.
It had been travelling from Queenborough on the Isle of Sheppey towards Belgium when it became stranded nine miles off the Thanet coast.
The incident happened at around 6pm yesterday as the tide was ebbing.
One of Margate's lifeboats was deployed to the scene to provide assistance including evacuating the occupants.
Once on site the lifeboat crew checked on the welfare of the passengers who were well but as the yacht would not refloat for several hours it was decided to take them off and land them back at Margate.
The vessel was then made secure and an anchor laid out.
The occupants were met at Margate by members of the coastguard and were "bedded down" in the boathouse, as there were no hotels available locally.
The lifeboat re-launched around 10.30pm on the flood tide to recover the vessel as it posed a potential hazard to navigation.
Once the yacht was afloat it was taken in tow by the lifeboat to Ramsgate harbour where it was reunited with its crew.
The lifeboat returned to station and was back ready for service by 5am earlier today.
Speaking after the call-out, Derek Amas, lifeboat operations manager, said: “This was a long and protracted call for the volunteer crew after they had spent the day at the boathouse to ensure a rapid response with expected heavy holiday traffic in the town.
"The safety of the yacht’s occupants was the priority but it was also prudent to assist when the casualty vessel refloated and help avoid any potential problems in an area close to busy shipping lanes.”