LITTLE GIRL IN BIG RUSH: Sally Lehner and her baby daughter Amali De Jonge, who was born on the side of the road between Campbell Town and Conara. Picture: WILL SWANBicheno parents Sally Lehner and Sol De Jonge faced the possibility of delivering their baby on the side of the road on the Lake Leake Highway after Ms Lehner’s labour progressed surprisingly quickly.
The couple left Bicheno about 3am to drive to the Launceston General Hospital to have their second child, which was not due until December 27.
Ms Lehner said she thought they had plenty of time.
However, they only got as far as the Kalangadoo shop, about halfway along the highway, when they had to stop and call for an ambulance.
“I thought Sol was going to have to deliver the baby in the car; I was a bit scared but he was pretty calm about it all,” she said.
Mr De Jonge had to use the public phone in the shop’s car park to call the ambulance because there was no mobile coverage in the area.
They had already been to her uncle’s house, which was just before the shop, hoping to use his phone, but he was out.
Once Mr De Jonge contacted the ambulance service, an operator stayed on the line until the unit from Campbell Town arrived.
Ms Lehner said that she kept asking where the ambulance was as she was concerned that she was going to have the baby in the back- seat of their car.
“We were getting jumpers out and anything else we could find as we only had one towel and the head was coming out,” she said.
Luckily, the ambulance arrived about 4.20am – 20 mins after Mr De Jonge’s call – and Ms Lehner was quickly transferred and on her way to Launceston.
Branch station officer Sharen Anderson was in the back with Ms Lehner and decided that it was better to drive on and be as close as possible to hospital.
But the baby had other ideas and about 5.10am, somewhere between Campbell Town and Conara, Amali was born in the back of the ambulance.
Mr De Jonge was following behind in his car so the ambulance stopped at Conara so that he could see his daughter and cut the cord.
Ms Lehner said that the ambulance officers were fantastic and she was pleased that Sol got to cut the cord.
“I thought we might make it to hospital when I was in the ambulance and I did feel better having people who knew what to do there,” she said.
Mr De Jonge was “stoked” that he was able to cut the cord, Ms Anderson said.
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.