Paramedics rushing a heavily pregnant woman to hospital in an ambulance had to slam the brakes on – so she could give birth on the hard shoulder of a motorway.
Sharnelle Davis, 26, was zooming along the M621 when her baby, who was already nine days late, decided she couldn’t wait any longer.
The ambulance service pulled over so they could help deliver little Mya Mae on the roadside, as her shocked dad Daniel Quigley watched on.
The 29-year-old roofer held Sharnelle’s hand as she gave just three pushes before Mya Mae came into the world weighing 8lb 11oz.
Hairdresser Sharnelle, from Leeds, West Yorks, said: “It all happened so fast.
“On the way to the hospital the ambulance had to pull over on the hard shoulder of the M621 so the staff could help me.
“I knew the baby was coming and I could not wait any longer. It was great to hear that first scream, she is gorgeous.”
She added: “I’ve never pulled over on the motorway before in my life!”
Sharnelle, who gave birth ten days ago, had been to hospital earlier in the day but was sent home after tests showed she was only 1cm dilated.
Later that night she went into advanced labour at home and instead of taking the car her panic-stricken family called an ambulance to get her to Leeds General Infirmary.
However, she was so far gone that paramedics couldn’t get her to the labour ward in time and she gave birth on the hard shoulder – after 19 hours of labour.
Daniel, 29, who has another daughter Anaiya, four, said: “I am still in shock now. Sharn was a warrior, an absolute trooper, she was so brave.
“I couldn’t believe it. It was beautiful to see our baby born and on the day after my birthday.
“The paramedics were amazing too and I cut the cord in the back of the ambulance.”
Now the family want to thank the “brilliant” ambulance staff who remained calm and professional during the emergency delivery.
Sharnelle’s mum Kim Heath, who was also in the ambulance, said: “The Yorkshire Ambulance staff were amazing.
“We are having a party and getting a cake in the shape of an ambulance, so it would be really nice to thank them.
“It was all a bit scary until Mya arrived. I was panicking a bit as it took a while for baby to turn pink and make a noise.
“At the time it was all pretty scary but we can smile about it now.”
After giving birth Sharnelle was taken the rest of the way to the hospital, where she was kept in overnight for checks.
Graham Butterworth, from the Yorkshire Ambulance Service, said: “On behalf of Yorkshire Ambulance Service I would like to congratulate the family on their new arrival.
“Our frontline staff do a fantastic job and it is very satisfying for them when they can use their skills and expertise, not just to help save lives, but to bring new lives into the world.
“Helping to deliver a healthy baby is an extremely rewarding experience and I know that our staff were absolutely thrilled to be part of this very special event.”