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Fire fighters miss delivery, but dad does fine

POULSBO — When Poulsbo Fire Fighter/Paramedic Travis Beach was sent to the Poulsbo Place neighborhood to help deliver a baby, he expected to help deliver a baby. The baby had other plans.

About 9 a.m. on Feb. 7, Beach and his team were sent out to the neighborhood in response to a 911 call stating "a mother is giving birth." In the time it took the paramedic team to assemble and get into the truck — the standard time is about two minutes — the healthy baby girl had already made her arrival.

According to a press release from the Poulsbo Fire Department, the father and 2-year-old sister of the baby were also home at the time of delivery. Because of patient privacy laws, the fire department was unable to release the family's name. The father told paramedics that he had taken the mother to the hospital earlier, but the labor and delivery staff determined she wasn't ready to deliver, so the family went home.

The new father greeted Beach at the door and Grandma's instincts had already kicked in — she was cradling the baby in a warm towel while mom was in the bedroom recuperating. The dad looked like he'd been through an ordeal but performed well under pressure.

"It was unexpected," Beach said. "No. 1, any time a baby is born in the field, it is somewhat unexpected. Although she was 38 weeks pregnant, she wasn't planning on having the baby at home."

The baby and mom were evaluated and taken to Harrison Medical Center's Labor and Delivery Unit in Silverdale. Both mom and daugther, to Beach's knowledge, are doing fine.

"Once we realized the baby was in good order and the mom was having normal symptoms, we slowed things down and let the daughter of the parents kind of socialize with the new baby," Beach said.

The suspicion the baby was fine was confirmed when paramedics took the baby outside to get it into the ambulance. The baby didn't like being exposed to the cold and let out a healthy wail to voice her displeasure. “She looked like the perfect model of a healthy baby,” he added. This type of call is low in frequency but high in risk and as a paramedic, it was a positive experience. I always find great satisfaction in witnessing life begin,” said Beach.

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