9 Sep 2009

Ship collision stalls teen's solo yacht voyage

6:30 pm on 9 September 2009

An Australian teenager's attempt to become the youngest person to sail solo around the world got off to a bad start when she collided with a ship off the Queensland coast.

Jessica Watson, 16, left Mooloolaba on Tuesday and was sailing off the coast of Brisbane when her 10.4-metre yacht Pink Lady hit the bulk carrier.

The accident broke the yacht's mast and damaged the deck, but she was unhurt, the ABC reports.

Ms Watson called her parents, who informed authorities. The told her to sail to Southport on the Gold Coast, where the damage will be assessed.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority says the merchant ship allegedly did not stop after the collision.

Ms Watson's family says she is not put off by the experience and remains confident of reaching her goal.