If not for the help of a perfect stranger, Kelly Brinkman may have given birth inside a car that was stuck on a flooded road.
Brinkman, 32, and her partner, Paulo, 31, were driving from their home in Mersea Island in southeastern England to a hospital in nearby Colchester after she had gone into labor. However, the causeway they needed to take to get off the island was flooded with three-and-a-half feet of water.
The couple thought they’d be able to pass before the high tide arrived 30 minutes later, but they didn’t quite get there on time. As Paulo made phone calls in search of help, lorry driver Justin Tacey spotted the couple and their predicament.
Tacey’s lorry is usually used to carry large construction vehicles, but he offered to hook up the couple’s car and take them through the flooded road and get them to dry land.
“It was probably the only way forward,” explains Tacey. “We got the car on the back of the lorry and we had to take it really steady. If I had gone much faster then there is a chance she would have had the baby on the back of the lorry, the poor girl. I was just doing what anyone else would have done.”
It turned out to be a life-saving gesture, After the couple arrived at the hospital, doctors told Brinkman that she needed an emergency Caesarian because she was in the breech position. The surgery was a success and Brinkman soon gave birth to baby Lillie, all thanks to the ride from Tacey.
“The only thing I can think of is that Justin was meant to be there for us,” says Brinkman. “If Justin had not been there, I have no idea what we would have done or what would have happened. As it is, we were sent home with a healthy little baby and a story which is going to be well known on the island for years to come.”