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Abby Sunderland safe after missing at sea

In this July 2009 photo provided by Laurence Sunderland, Abby Sunderland is shown sailing in Santa Monica Bay, in Santa Monica, Calif. (Laurence Sunderland)

June 12, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
After drifting at sea for days Abby Sunderland is finally safe and now sharing what the past few days have been like by phone. "It's been a little bit crazy the past few days, everything's happened pretty fast but I'm really lucky that there was a boat that could come and get me," Sunderland said.

A French fishing vessel reached the 16-year-old sailor from Thousand Oaks around 3 a.m. Pacific time. She was 2000 miles off the coast of Australia.

"We are relieved in good hands," Laurence Sunderland, Abby's father said.

The rescue comes two days after rough seas battered her boat and dashed her dream of sailing around the world alone.

"When stuff's going on out there you can't really get too scared about it," Sunderland said. "I mean it doesn't do any good."

Abby's father has been criticized for allowing his daughter to make such a dangerous trip, but Laurence Sunderland is not backing down.

"Abigail has been raised on the ocean," he said. "Second nature to Abigail."

On her blog, Abby is also blasting the critics.

"There are plenty of things people can think of to blame for my situation," she writes. "My age, the time of year and many more. The truth is, I was in a storm. As for age, since when does age create gigantic waves and storms?"

Abby and her father won't waver and the teen is not ruling another attempt at an around the world sail in the future.

It will take about a week for the rescue boat to reach land.

Her family says she has some bumps and bruises but is in good condition.


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