Two people trapped on rocks were winched on to a helicopter.
Emergency service workers who saved the pair then had to go back to the scene after people were spotted at the vessel again.
The incident has been described as “worrying”.
The drama unfolded near Banff at just before 1.30pm yesterday when the men were sailing a pleasure craft.
Sea conditions took a turn for the worse and the boat got into difficulty, so they clambered on to rocks to the east of Whitehills Harbour.
They then made a mayday call and the Coastguard’s rescue helicopter Bond 1 was scrambled to the scene.
The men were winched to safety and dropped off in a nearby field after a medical examination found no sign of injury.
A spokesman for Macduff Lifeboat, which assisted in the rescue, said the lifeboat returned to base – and then had to head back to the rocks.
He added: “Helmsman James West was told they were being tasked back to the casualty vessel off Whitehills, where two people had been seen by local Coastguards with the casualty vessel.
“The actions of these two people caused the Coastguards to have immediate concern for their safety.”
Mr West said: “The waters around this part of the coast can be quite unpredictable, with lots of rocky outcrops and crags.”
Macduff Lifeboat operations manager Roy Morrison said: “To be called out a second time to the same location is disappointing and worrying. Our lifeboat volunteers and members of our partners in the Coastguard go out in all weathers and any time of day or night to assist people in danger.
“We do not expect to be called back to the same location to assist people for a second time within such a short space of time.”
Macduff Coxswain Chassey Findlay said: “I am concerned that, after an operation with a rescue helicopter and a lifeboat, someone would think it was sensible to go and put themselves in danger in the situation and location that had been the focus of a rescue operation only a short time earlier.
‘I have to stress that human life is worth more than any vessel and this afternoon could have turned out very differently.”
A Coastguard spokesman said the men left the scene later in the afternoon and the lifeboat returned to base for a second time.”