Drama as baby is delivered in van on way to Barrow hospital
Last updated at 17:39, Monday, 23 September 2013
A CUMBRIA mum has described the dramatic moment her partner unwrapped the umbilical cord from round their newborn baby’s neck – while still driving them in his van to hospital.
Daniel Kerr’s quick-thinking actions came as his partner, Jess Gibbs, gave birth to little Alfie – her third child – at 1.10am as the couple were just minutes away from the maternity unit at Furness General Hospital in Barrow.
Miss Gibbs said that Alfie’s rapid arrival caught them both by surprise and he was delivered in the footwell of the van as they were still in transit.
And Mr Kerr had to step in when the couple noticed the baby was blue because the cord had become wrapped around his neck.
Miss Gibbs said: “I looked at Alfie and he was just blue. I looked at his neck and realised the cord was still around it.
“Daniel managed to untangle it. We didn’t have time to stop. It all happened so quickly.’’
The drama unfolded as Miss Gibbs woke up at midnight on Wednesday with contractions. But even then she didn’t imagine that within the next hour she would have given birth in her partner’s works van just past a roundabout near FGH.
“It was completely different to how I planned it!” said the 22-year-old mother, of Langdale Crescent, Kendal.
“I keep saying it is one of those things you could never imagine happening to you. It was like something you see on television.”
Miss Gibbs had woken up abruptly at 12.05am at home, after feeling sharp, painful contractions. She was not due to give birth for another two weeks.
After ringing Helme Chase maternity unit in Kendal, the couple were told to head to Barrow.
“When they said to go to Barrow, I didn’t think I would make it,” said Miss Gibbs, also mother to Taylor, 6, and Abbey, 5. “The pains started getting worse. I was cupping myself, I told myself not to push. But then I felt the urge to push. I felt his head come out and then, within seconds, Alfie came out into my hands. My pyjama bottoms caught him.”
Little Alfie was born somewhere near the junction between Park Road and Barrow Road.
Mr Kerr, 26, a floor layer, said: “I just keep thinking that it was quite a long way to get to Barrow. It was just mad.
“Jess kept saying ‘I’m not going to make it’. I thought she was just exaggerating but then I heard her shouting: ‘The baby’s coming out, it’s coming out!’”
The couple stayed in Furness General Hospital on Wednesday, being released later that evening, with little Alfie none the worse for his dramatic entrance to the world.
Back at home, the family are now able to laugh about their ordeal.
“It’s definitely something we can’t wait to tell Alfie about when he’s older,” said Miss Gibbs.
First published at 16:03, Monday, 23 September 2013
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
Have your say
I am the proud aunty to baby alfie john Kerr, my sister rang me at 10 2 1 in the morning explaining the contractions. Unfortunately i am back at university so i am not able to see him as much as i wanted. But i am so proud of jess and look forward to getting back her. Cannot believe she made the paper haha :)