Sunderland activated a distress call after a storm snapped the mast of her boat, which remained upright, but unable to sail. That kicked off several nervous hours as aid traveled to her remote location.
Her parents were on "Good Morning America" this morning to talk about their relief and address those who criticized letting a 16-year-old attempt something like this.
MaryAnne Sunderland, who is due to give birth at the end of the month, said she reminded herself throughout the ordeal that her daughter's boat was hard to sink, but "but that doesn't mean it wasn't dark, cold and frightening."
"How many teenagers die in car accidents every year?" Laurence Sunderland said. "Should we stop them from driving a car?"It could be another day before a French fishing vessel can pull her boat, Wild Eyes, to shore. Officials say they are confident she'll be safe until they can reach her.
Sunderland began her trip on January 23. Her older brother, Zac, completed a similar trip around the world last year, when he was 17.