The first baby of 2019 in Terrace was born at Mills Memorial Hospital on Jan. 1 at 2:33 p.m. to parents Claire and Shane Wiebe. (File Photo)

Vernon firefighters help deliver healthy baby girl

Emergency labour, close fire station and paramedic turned firefighter a perfect mix for excellent care

Vernon firefighters helped deliver a healthy baby girl in an emergency call early Saturday morning.

Around 4:15 a.m., May 1, Vernon Fire Rescue Services was called out for an emergency labour situation in the 6900 block of Cummins Road. Luckily, the station is nearby and firefighters were on scene within two minutes.

“By the time we got upstairs, the baby was already coming so there was no time to get the mother to hospital,” acting lieutenant Trevor Keenan said. “We were first on scene, so firefighter Cody Grier jumped immediately into action and helped calm the mother, coaching her through a fast delivery with BC Ambulance Service dispatch on the phone.”

Grier spent 10 years working a paramedic before moving to Vernon to become a firefighter. His training, as well as the regular emergency medical training the department provides its members, helped keep first responders calm in this fast-moving event.

“Our trainers do an exceptional job of preparing us for scenarios like this, even if we don’t see them very often,” said Keenan. “We do annual training for a number of major medical situations, such as bleeding control, spinal injuries, and childbirth, and regularly review how we would approach various situations within our platoons.”

Ambulance arrived moments after the baby and both baby and mom were assessed before transporting to hospital for additional care.

“This was a call that showcased the strong teamwork of our local emergency response agencies,” said Grier. “There aren’t many times in your career that you get to congratulate someone and tell them they have a beautiful baby girl! The mother did such a great job. It was a moment to remember.”

Vernon Fire Rescue would like to congratulate the family on its new addition and wish them well at the start of this new chapter.

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@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

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