Stuck in the storm, Toronto-area woman nearly gives birth on highway
Published Saturday, February 9, 2013 7:57PM EST
What was supposed to be a “snow day” for one Toronto-area mom-to-be became a harried journey to the hospital after she went into early labour during one of the worst storms to hit the area in years.
Carol Wong skipped work to avoid Friday’s treacherous weather and was at home in Richmond Hill when she began having contractions.
She and her husband Elvin opted to set out to the hospital, but soon encountered several obstacles.
The pair was travelling along Highway 404 when a car spun out in front of them. Elvin swerved to the right and hit a snow bank, narrowly avoiding an accident.
“My wife started crying at this point,” he said.
Determined to get to North York General Hospital, the couple kept on driving, but as they reached the on-ramp to Highway 401, they got stuck in gridlock.
With Carol’s contractions now three minutes apart, they called 911. But at first, it seemed like even emergency services would not be able to help right away.
“When the firetruck came, and they were stuck too, I was like, ‘This is like exactly a movie,’” Elvin said.
Tow trucks and plows were ordered to clear the way, but by then it was too late.
On scene, OPP Sgt. Gerry Lannigan took control of the situation and directed Carol out of the car. Her husband and a firefighter lifted Carol over a concrete barrier separating the on-ramp from the 401.
The Wongs arrived just in time to deliver baby Elise in hospital.
Back at work a day later, Lannigan said the best thing the Wongs could have done was call 911.
“We were there really quickly, and we got them to the hospital very quickly,” Lannigan said.
He wasn’t the only one feeling relief a day after baby Elise’s birth.
"I’m very, very grateful that everything turned out so well,” Carol said.
With a report from CTV Toronto’s Natalie Johnson
Baby Elise is pictured a day after her birth at North York General Hospital in this image taken from video on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013.
Richmond Hill parents Carol and Elvin Wong pose with their newborn daughter Elise at North York General Hospital in this image taken from video on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013.