Firefighters for the City of Columbus helped deliver a baby boy early Thursday, October 18, at a local apartment complex, bringing a new life into the world within 4 minutes of arriving at the scene.
The baby boy and his mother, who is in her early 30s, are doing well thanks to the quick actions of Columbus Firefighters Scott Bonnell, Matthew Dwyer and Ricky Mullis. Off-duty Firefighter Don Richards also responded as a paramedic with the Columbus Regional Hospital ambulance.
The firefighters were dispatched from Station 3 on South Gladstone Avenue to the woman’s apartment on Erin Drive in the Quail Run apartment complex. When they arrived at 2:33 a.m., the woman was in the process of giving birth.
Firefighters Bonnell, Dwyer and Mullis relied on their training to compassionately provide care for the woman and assist in the baby’s delivery. Within 4 minutes of the firefighters’ arrival, the child was born.
The baby’s birth was premature, but the firefighters conducted the delivery with no major issues. They even were able to let the boy’s father cut the baby’s umbilical cord at the apartment.
After the birth, the woman and her son were taken to Columbus Regional Hospital for further care.
“Our firefighters acted quickly and with great care to make sure this new mother and her baby boy were safe and that the delivery went as well as possible,” Columbus Fire Department Chief Dave Allmon said. “They worked with the family to bring a new life into this world, and we commend them and the child’s parents for their brave efforts.”
Columbus firefighters rarely assist in the full delivery of a baby. The birth Thursday morning marked the first time this year in Columbus that firefighters delivered a baby at the scene. It was the third birth at a scene countywide this year.
“We usually have enough advance notice and can assist in getting the mother to the hospital before she gives birth,” said Mike Kutsko, Columbus Fire Department Deputy Chief of EMS. “This is one of those rare occasions where our firefighters were able to help one of our residents in delivering her son.”
A majority of the calls that firefighters respond to are medical assists, including Thursday’s child birth. So far this year, the Columbus Fire Department has responded to 3,602 runs. Medical assists counted for 2,273 (63 percent) of the total runs. Firefighters train annually to provide emergency medical assistance to residents of Columbus, including a specific focus on child birth.
“We are stepping up our training to be even more prepared for any type of call we may receive,” Chief Allmon said. “The birth of this child Thursday morning shows that although certain types of calls are uncommon, being well prepared can help make our response safe and efficient.”