GTA hospitals reporting baby boom 9 months after ice storm
Nine months after a vicious ice storm besieged the Greater Toronto Area, leaving thousands in the dark for days, hospitals are reporting a surge in births.
GTA hospitals plan to handle the extra bundles of joy by beefing up staff with more nurses and obstetricians, and making more beds available.
New parents Nicole Pollock and Kyle Niezen welcomed their son Dallas at 12:24 a.m. on Monday.
“I don’t even know how to describe it, it’s just an amazing feeling…We’re just so happy to have him,” Pollock said.
Pollock and Niezen were not planning on having a baby. When they found out they were expecting, they were surprised, but not completely shocked as they backdated nine months to when the ice storm hit.
“When you have no power and there’s nothing on TV, what else are you going to do?,” Pollock said, laughing.
The increase in births also surprised Alleen Sakarian, who welcomed her newborn daughter, Gabriella Sakarian, on Sept. 9.
Sakarian said that when she first heard about the surge of babies who were conceived during Toronto’s ice storm, she thought it was unlikely.
"Honestly, I was really skeptical about it at first," she told CTVNews.ca in an interview Wednesday afternoon.
But Sakarian -- who said the birth of her daughter was planned, and that it was just a coincidence she was conceived during the ice storm – said she's now convinced the phenomenon is real.
"My Facebook feed is full of pictures of newborns," she said.
In anticipation of the ice storm babies, Lakeridge Health in Oshawa placed an advertisement in a local parenting magazine, letting parents know what they could expect for their hospital birth.
“Parents are telling us they lost power for three to four days, sometimes longer, sometimes less. Most people didn’t want to leave their homes, so they used creative ways to keep warm,” Lakeridge Health director of women’s and children’s health care Deb Galet said with a coy smile.
Galet said the maternity ward at the Oshawa hospital is now full. On Friday night alone, 10 babies were delivered there.
With a report from CTV Toronto's Dana Levenson