East Whiteland Firefighters/EMTs Delivered Baby in Car
"[The parents] were on their way to the hospital and didn’t quite make it," fire company president Gary Sheridan said at a recent township meeting.
In the wee hours of Friday, July 20, a pregnant couple were on their way to Paoli Hospital, in labor, when they realized their baby wasn't going to wait for them to arrive. They pulled off of Route 202 and onto the shoulder of Matthews Road and called 911.
East Whiteland Fire Company EMTs Mike Rissell and Brian Hughes responded to the scene, joining East Whiteland Police and a Malvern Fire Company paramedic.
In the back seat of a hatchback, the mother gave birth to a healthy boy around 2:30 a.m. There were no complications during the birth.
East Whiteland Fire Marshal Ken Battin said such on-the-spot deliveries aren't too uncommon. The fire company members cited medical privacy rules regarding the parents' identity, beyond the fact that they were not East Whiteland residents.
Rissell, with 35 years of experience as a firefighter and EMT, said this was the first delivery he has performed, though he has assisted with emergency deliveries in the past. He has been a staff member at East Whiteland Fire Company for five years.
"Mom did all the work, we were just there to give her a hand," Rissell said. "... It was a really happy ending—not an ending, a happy beginning."