SINGAPORE – When Mr Muhammad Annur Mohammad’s heavily pregnant wife, Madam Mardhiah Abdul Malek, experienced contractions on Sunday (Sept 12), the couple did not panic.
After all, this was her third pregnancy, and the previous two births took more than 24 hours for each baby to be delivered.
But after her water bag broke and the contractions worsened, the couple, both 31, realised this was different.
They called for a private-hire car through Tada, a ride-sharing app, but 10 minutes into the journey, the baby’s head appeared.
Speaking to The Straits Times on Tuesday over the phone, Mr Muhammad, who also has a four-year-old daughter and a one-year-old son, said that after the water bag broke, the couple panicked and did not have time to pack for the trip.
He said: “For the first two births, the contractions would come and go. For this baby, the contractions were very fast and severe.”
That was when they called for a car to take them to the hospital.
At 5.50am, the vehicle driven by Mr Addy Soon, 53, arrived.
Mr Soon said although he had advised them to call for an ambulance, Mr Muhammad assured him that his wife would be able to last the journey.
Said Mr Soon: “Being a professional, I had to proceed with the ride.”
But things went south very quickly.
As the car left the carpark, Madam Mardhiah growled in pain and grabbed the car seat. Mr Muhammad urged Mr Soon to drive faster.
After about 10 minutes, Mr Muhammad said: “I felt something below, and I didn’t know what it was. But it felt round, a baby’s head. Then, I saw my hands were bloodied.”
Mr Soon stopped at Springleaf MRT station, in Upper Thomson Road, and called for an ambulance.
He saw groups of cyclists so he went onto the middle of the road and shouted for medical assistance while waving the flashlight on his phone.
After five minutes, a group of about 20 cyclists stopped. Amazingly, one of them was a doctor, who sprang into action.
He went to the back of the car and helped deliver their daughter, weighing 2.5kg, at around at 6.20am.
Mr Muhammad said the ambulance arrived at around 6.25am to ferry the couple to KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital.
Mr Jonathan Chua, Tada general manager, congratulated the couple and said the company will be giving them a month’s worth of free rides, and $300 worth of Tada Fresh Market grocery vouchers.
Tada will also be covering Mr Soon’s car cleaning expenses and a sum to cover his loss of income while his car is out of commission.
Tada is also trying to contact the doctor and cyclists who assisted in the birth. They can contact the company at [email protected]
Tada debuted its ride-hailing services in Singapore in 2018 and this is the first birth in one of its cars.
Mr Muhammad said he was grateful to Mr Soon and the cyclists who helped.
He said: “My wife and I would like to give special thanks to the doctor and the driver. They are our heroes.
“I thought these things only happened in the movies. Never in my life did I expect this to happen to me.”
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