LIVESTOCK carrier MV Barkly Pearl has been directed to sail to the port of Geraldton following the discovery of damage to its hull.

According to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, the vessel had sustained damage to its hull and was about 120km north of Geraldton when the regulator became involved.

On Monday night, AMSA tasked its Challenger search and rescue jet to fly over the vessel and it was able to confirm damage to the starboard side of the vessel, which was listing to port.

AMSA general manager of response Mark Morrow said there were significant concerns for the integrity of the vessel and its ability to safely reach Indonesia, its planned destination.

“We held concerns about the integrity of the vessel and the potential for environmental issues,” Mr Morrow said.

“As a result, AMSA issued a direction for the vessel to make its way to safety in the Port of Geraldton.”

AMSA officials are working with Western Australian authorities to ensure the vessel arrives safely in Geraldton.

This includes managing any COVID risks.