‘She’s about to pop’ – 999 call released after baby is born on motorway

By Claire Hayhurst, PA

A 999 call of the moment a baby boy was born on the inside lane of a busy motorway has been released by an ambulance service.

Jayne Rowland, 36, was on her way to hospital when she went into the final stages of labour in roadworks on the M5 in Somerset.

Her partner, Joshua Mogg, 29, called 999 minutes before baby Harry was born in their car on the southbound carriageway near junction 24.

Emergency services arrived moments after Harry’s birth to find the family stopped on the inside lane of the motorway as there was no hard shoulder.

The 999 call begins with Mr Mogg telling call handler Jonathan Leaton: “I think she’s almost about to pop… I’m in the roadworks at 50 miles an hour.”

Mr Leaton instructed Mr Mogg, from Street, Somerset, to put his hazard lights on and pull over shortly before little Harry was born.

Traffic can be heard driving past as Harry’s mother says “Hello” to the newborn, followed by his father telling him: “Hello mister.”

The couple had been travelling to Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton for Ms Rowland to be induced at 9.30am on November 1.

Harry was born in the front passenger seat of the car at 7.57am, just 30 minutes after they had left home.

He weighed 7lb 8oz at birth and his birth certificate has the place of birth recorded as “M5”.

“I’d had discomfort for around three weeks, and didn’t feel anything different when I woke up that day. But the pain got worse and worse in the car, so I asked Josh to pull over,” Ms Rowland, a teaching assistant, said.

“Everything seemed to happen very quickly. The call handler talked it through with us, and then the paramedics and police arrived.

“They all made such a difference. We’re so thankful.

“I just wanted to get to the hospital safely and on time.

“It wasn’t until afterwards that I realised how much danger we were in, because there was nowhere safe to stop in the roadworks.”

She praised a lorry driver who shielded the family from traffic by stopping and putting his hazard warning lights on.

Harry, his parents and brother Benjamin, eight, visited Taunton Ambulance Station on February 13 to thank the staff from South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust in person.

Mr Mogg, a tree surgeon, said: “Jayne was my priority. So I was first trying to get her to hospital as quickly and safely as possible.

“Then I just had to get out of the car and get on with it.

“Delivering my baby son on a motorway is probably the best thing I’ve done in my life.

“I feel it’s given me a stronger bond with Harry.”

The couple also expressed thanks to Avon and Somerset Police officers who returned their car and personal possessions from the scene to them.

Mr Leaton, who talked the parents through the motorway delivery, said: “They both did incredibly well throughout the entire call.

“They remained calm and followed every instruction which ensured the best possible outcome.”

Operations officer Dan Wilsher was first on the scene before he was joined by paramedic Simon White and student paramedic Alexandra Luxton.

“I remember being very aware of the safety aspect, as Josh and Jayne’s car was in a live traffic lane,” Mr Wilsher said.

“When I approached the passenger door, I saw a tiny little face wrapped in blankets looking back at me.”