Belfast Telegraph

Baby Tessa's dramatic delivery by roadside after speed bumps induce mum

By Joanne Sweeney

She's the bouncing baby girl who made her dramatic appearance on the hard shoulder of the A1 dual carriageway in Co Down during rush hour traffic.

Baby Tessa arrived with quite a bump - perhaps aided by the speed cushions that her mother Leanne had to endure as her husband was driving her to hospital.

At 7lbs 6oz, the six-day-old lies contentedly in her mother's arms oblivious to the drama she caused in making her entry into the world.

Her parents, Leanne Greene and Ian Avery from Banbridge, are delighted they now have a fantastic story to tell her and her own children when she grows up.

Tessa was born literally within minutes after Ian was forced to pull over his BMW on the hard shoulder close to Dromore as the couple travelled to Belfast's Royal Victoria for her birth.

While cars and lorries thundered past around 5pm last Friday heading from Newry to Belfast, Leanne had barely time to scream before her third baby was born.

The couple's two other children James (16) and Nadine (12) are both in awe of their baby sister.

Both were normal timed deliveries for Leanne.

With her contradictions happening every six minutes when she left her home, Leanne thought she had still plenty of time to travel to the RVH, where she had enjoyed a great delivery with Nadine.

But as she and her partner took off and drove down the Ballygowan Road where they live, and over its speed cushions, Leanne felt every single one.

The 35-year-old, who was one week overdue, said: "We were in the car and I thought everything was ok and we had plenty of time and then my contradictions began to get closer together. They went from five to six minutes apart, then two, and two and two.

"But even when Ian pulled the car over to the hard shoulder I didn't think I was going to have the baby then, but he could see the pain on my face.

"I thought we had stopped so that I could get more comfortable and have a drink of water.

"But then I had really one intense pain that took my breath away, and I just knew that she was coming and called to Ian to help."

Ian (41) took up the story: "I'm not sure if the speed bumps did it, but Leanne cried out with the first one and so I slowed down over the rest.

"When we got onto the dual carriageway, I just knew by Leanne's face that she was close as she has a very high pain threshold, so I called for an ambulance.

"The controller at the end of the phone asked what I could see and I said a head, and then I just dropped the phone.

"I helped deliver Tessa and put her on Leanne's tummy and then we covered her with Leanne's cardigan.

"I then went to the boot to get out the wee hat and blankets that Leanne had in her bag."

However, Leanne described how, for a few heart-stopping moments, she feared for Tessa after the baby began to choke and turn slightly blue around her mouth.

"I called to Ian and he was brilliant and began to clear her mouth and nose, and then she coughed up whatever was troubling her and gave a big cry," Leanne explained.

Ian added: "We just kept rubbing Tessa and I was advised to keep them warm as possible but I didn't have time to worry, I just had to react."

While Tessa arrived before paramedics Stevie Murphy and Marty Campbell did, the couple were full of praise for their help and the care that they received at the RVH.

"Leanne and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the call handler, paramedics and staff at the Royal Jubilee for all their help and support," said Ian.

Belfast Telegraph


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