Babies are typically delivered safely within the confines of a hospital or at home with the assistance of a doula or midwife. Births at fire stations or in ambulances rarely occur.
However, when such births do occur, it is preferable for first responders or medical personnel to be in close proximity.
Not According to Plan
Paula Oliveira was in her 39th week of pregnancy and nearing her due date..
Oliveira attempted to go to the hospital, but was sent home as she was not yet close enough to delivery. However, the next morning proved to be a different story.
At 6:45 a.m. on Sunday morning, Hanover firefighters received a call that a woman was pulled over on the side of the road and was in active labor.
Medics who arrived at the scene assessed the situation and determined that the baby was likely to be born within minutes. Although delivering a baby in a car is possible, the firefighters loaded the mother onto a stretcher and placed her in the ambulance.
Sebastian Rivas and Jonathan Pelletier accompanied the mother in the back of the ambulance while Capt. Fred Freeman drove to the hospital.
Rivas and Pelletier had already had a very long night, responding to back-to-back calls that included a wellbeing check on an individual who had unfortunately passed away.
Despite their long night, the two men were able to assist in bringing a new life into the world during their brief stint in the ambulance.
A Healthy Baby
Oliveira gave birth to her baby in the ambulance, and the bouncing motion over a set of railroad tracks signaled the arrival of a healthy baby boy, whom she named Noah.
Rivas commented, "He was remarkably clean. It was like in the movies."
Noah was born just 17 minutes after the 911 call, from the time Rivas held him in his arms. Although it is typical for the driver of the ambulance to pull over when the mother is close to delivering, Noah was in such a rush to be born that Freeman did not have a chance to do so.
Rivas reported that they only had a few seconds' warning and not enough time to request that Freeman stop the vehicle. Once they were able to pull over, Rivas severed the cord, cleaned Noah, and handed him to his mother, who was overjoyed.
Upon arriving at the hospital, Oliveira and Noah were taken care of by a team of doctors and nurses. Following the ordeal, Oliveira posted a photo of Noah to the firefighters' Facebook page and expressed her gratitude. Rivas commented that it was "a Father's Day to remember."