18 December 2000

Baby is born on BA flight over Atlantic

By David Millward

British Airways cabin crew have helped deliver a baby girl on a flight from London to Montreal.

A woman, understood to be Nigerian, went into labour four hours after leaving Heathrow, forcing the aircraft to make an unscheduled stop at St John's in Newfoundland. The baby was the third to be born on a BA flight in the last three years.

The airline does not carry women who are more than 36 weeks pregnant for health reasons. A section of the plane was sealed off as two BA staff joined a doctor, who was a passenger on the plane, in ensuring the child's safe delivery.

Congratulations to the mother were broadcast by staff over the aircraft's loudspeaker system. The mother and child were taken to a hospital in St John's and the aircraft resumed its flight after a two-hour delay.

A BA spokesman said: "The crew did a grand job and we are very proud of them. All our crew are trained to deal with an on-board birth and all aircraft are equipped with a full delivery kit."

The cabin crew involved in the delivery were in America last night and unavailable for comment. The hospital was also unable to say whether the mother and baby were still in its care after the mid-air birth last Monday.