Exmouth’s inshore lifeboat was launched when a dinghy capsized near Lympstone on Friday lunchtime.
The RNLI crew responded following a call from a concerned member of the public that two people were in the River Exe and appeared in difficulty.
The inshore lifeboat crew, David Preece, Harry Griffin and Roger Jackson, located the capsized vessel in the River Exe off Lympstone Sailing Club, recovered two people from the water and helped another on shore.
Exmouth RNLI gave warnings not to head onto the water when weather warnings have been issued.
David Preece, inshore lifeboat helm, said: “In the last few days several severe weather alerts – including a yellow warning – about heavy rain, strong winds and rough tides have been issued.
“It is vital to pay heed to those warnings and not venture out on the water in such conditions.”
The inshore lifeboat was launched at around 1.30pm on Friday, August 9. Exmouth RNLI said no one was injured.
The stricken vessel was damaged and lost its centre board and rudder.