‘Stop the car, the baby is coming’ – Couple’s fright as baby is born in ‘the middle of nowhere’

PUBLISHED: 12:00 18 August 2017

Alex with wife Telma, daughter Alicia and new son Rafael.

Alex with wife Telma, daughter Alicia and new son Rafael.

Archant

Labour can be a stressful time for any parent but a Cheddar hairdresser was forced to deliver his son ‘in the middle of nowhere’.

Father delivers his son in the middle of the Mendips. Father delivers his son in the middle of the Mendips.

Alex Barnes, aged 28, and his wife Telma, aged 33, were caught in the middle of the Mendips, on their way to hospital, when their son Rafael was born.

Telma was four days overdue when she went into labour on July 22.

The duo, who already have a one-year-old daughter called Alicia, rushed to Bath Hospital, where they were due to have the baby, but were told to go home.

Alex, who works at Chops Salon in Bath Street, told the Mercury: “Telma was having contractions every two and a half minutes and she was 3cm dilated but we were told they considered that ‘pre-labour’.

Alex with wife Telma, daughter Alicia and new son Rafael. Alex with wife Telma, daughter Alicia and new son Rafael.

“The doctor told us she could be like this for another two days so to go home and get some rest.”

The couple made the one-hour journey home, only to find they needed to return to the hospital.

Alex said: “We arrived home at around 1am but after about 15 minutes she was very uncomfortable.

“We were driving back to the hospital and at this point she was in agony, she was screaming.

Father delivers his son in the middle of the Mendips. Father delivers his son in the middle of the Mendips.

“We got to the Miner’s Arms crossroads in the middle of nowhere when she told me to stop the car and said the baby was coming.”

Alex called 999 after he saw the baby’s head and was given advice over phone on how to deliver the baby.

Rafael was born at around 2.15am and Alex had to use a shoe lace to tie the umbilical cord.

Alex said: “It was absolutely terrifying; if something had happened I would have been powerless to help.

Father delivers his son in the middle of the Mendips. Father delivers his son in the middle of the Mendips.

“After delivering the baby, I spent a long time sitting in the car trying to keep him warm with the heating on full blast while the paramedics, who arrived 15 minutes later, looked after Telma.”

Telma recovered from the birth quickly, which Alex said was ‘amazing’ since she had said she had wanted to have morphine and an epidural for the birth.

He added: “She did the whole birth on a couple of paracetamol.”

Telma and Rafael were taken by ambulance to the hospital where they stayed overnight.

Alex said: “He is doing very well and we have had a lot of family come around to greet him.”

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