Rescuers have made contact with Abby Sunderland, the Californian teenage sailor who went missing yesterday after her record attempt to circumnavigate the globe ran into a powerful storm in the middle of the Indian Ocean.
Laurence Sunderland, Abby’s father, said that rescuers on board a chartered Australian aircraft who were looking for the 16-year-old had made contact with her earlier today and that she was alive.
"She’s fine, the boat’s afloat and she’s on it," Mr Sutherland told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. "It’s huge, fantastic, exciting news," Times Online reports.
According to CBC News, Sunderland had sent distress signals from mountainous seas between Africa and Australia while sailing solo around the world.
She had made several broken calls to her family and reported her yacht was being tossed by nine-meter waves.
Abby set sail from Los Angeles County's Marina del Rey in her 12-metre boat, Wild Eyes, on Jan. 23 in an attempt to become the youngest person to sail around the world alone without stopping. Her brother Zac briefly held the record at age 17.