Ipswich: Drama on Orwell Bridge at midnight as police officers turn midwives to deliver baby boy
17:05 16 July 2014
Two police officers working a night shift turned their hands to midwifery when a frantic father-to-be flagged them down on the Orwell Bridge saying his wife had gone into labour.
PCs Jerry Cohen and Andy Masterson from the Roads Policing and Firearms Operations Unit based at Martlesham headquarters had been called to the Orwell Bridge in the early hours of Tuesday and were dealing with a broken down car.
Whilst arranging recovery for the vehicle Jerry and Andy saw a car approach and the driver asked them for help, saying his wife had gone into labour.
Both officers ran over to the car, donned their protective gloves and came to the assistance of Holly Mackie, age 33, from the Hadleigh area who was very close to giving birth.
Within seconds of arriving at the car, Jerry and Andy helped deliver a healthy baby boy, Rupert William Mackie at 12 minutes past midnight.
PC Andy Masterson said: “This was very much a case of being in the right place at the right time, we just happened to be on the Orwell Bridge dealing with a broken down car when we heard someone shouting. Andrew Mackie was coming towards us saying his wife had gone into labour and could we help?
“Jerry and I are both fathers and have a fair degree of knowledge when it comes to labour but have never been quite so hands on. Rupert arrived very quickly and we wrapped him up in one of our emergency foil blankets which we always have with us, started the engine of the car and made sure he stayed warm until the ambulance arrived.”
Rupert arrived weighing 7lbs 5oz and is a brother for Rose, two.
Speaking afterwards, Andrew Mackie said: “Holly was one week overdue when she started having labour pains, we took our two year old daughter, Rose, to her grandparents in Capel and not long afterwards when I was driving towards the Orwell Bridge, Holly said the baby was coming.
“It was absolute sheer luck I could see blue lights flashing on the bridge – I didn’t care which emergency service it was I just knew I would have to ask for help.
“We would like to thank Andy and Jerry so much for their help; they really did go above and beyond both on the bridge and afterwards at the hospital. We are so grateful for what they did but also that they stayed so calm throughout.”
County Policing Commander Chief Superintendent Jon Brighton said: “This is a fantastic example showing that our police officers have to be ready for any situation they are faced with. It was quite fortuitous that Jerry and Andy are both fathers already and know what needs to be done and the importance of keeping a new born baby warm and more importantly staying calm themselves.
“I am delighted to hear that mother and baby are doing well and will have an interesting story to tell for years to come.”