Taxi drivers have become used to delivering all sorts during the pandemic, with City Taxis launching its City Grab service a year ago this month, but this was a new experience for Mujahid Hussain.
He was called in the early hours of last Thursday to take Natalia Jodello and her partner Kamil Truss from their home in Darnall to the Jessop Wing maternity unit after Natalia went into labour.
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On arrival, Mujahid rushed into the hospital to get help while Kamil, a 30-year-old builder, stayed with Natalia, 23, and their one-year-old son, Kuba.
Mujahid quickly returned with a trolley and eight midwives in tow, but after being assessed Natalia was advised it was too late to go inside and she ended up giving birth in the back of the car.
Kamil said the new arrival Filip, born weighing 7lb 1oz, and his mum were both back home and doing well.
"I was in great shock when they said they were going to have to deliver our baby in the back of the taxi,” he added.
"I would like to thank Mujahid very much for his help, responsibility and care. He did everything with us to make it all right.”
Mujahid, who is 36 and also lives in Darnall, spoke of his relief that little Filip was fine after his dramatic arrival.
"After I went in to get help, eight midwives ran out. Their response was amazing and I’d like to say a big thanks to them,” he said.
"One of them said the head was almost out so they were going to have to deliver the baby in the back of the car. I was worried there wouldn’t be enough room for them back there but they were amazing.
“Kamil, his one-year-old and I stood aside while the midwives did what they needed to do and once the baby was born they wrapped him up and rushed him inside, with his mum following close behind on the trolley.
"The midwives gave me some towels and wipes to help me clean the car, which took around half an hour, and I went inside a few times to ask how they were doing because that was obviously my main concern.”
Mujahid, who has been a City Taxis driver since 2018, added: “It was a truly special moment and a delivery that I’ll never forget. I’m used to doing deliveries but you never expect you’re going to deliver a baby at the end of your shift.”
Paul Gosney, City Grab business development director, said the company had supported 100s of local independent firms since its launch, boosting Sheffield’s economy to the tune of £7.5 million, but he never expected one of its drivers to deliver a baby.
“What a wonderful way to end a year of uncertainty and mark City Grab’s first birthday with little Filip being delivered in the back of one of our cars,” he added.