‘Operating on minimal light’: Mom shares harrowing and happy story of son’s birth in brutal snowstorm

A Manitoba mother is sharing her happy, yet harrowing story about the birth of her son during the wicked snowstorm last weekend.

Ashley Lindell lives near Eriksdale, about 140 kilometres north of Winnipeg, in one of the hard hit areas of the storm.

The now mother of five said her labour pains began around 3:30 a.m. Saturday, Oct.12. As soon as she and her husband left, they encountered trouble getting out of the driveway.

“There were trees and the snow was super deep,” said Lindell in a phone call with CTV News.

Lindell said they decided to go to the local hospital nearby in town, instead of Winnipeg because the roads were so terrible.

‘We’re lucky we made it there. It was super rough and we were breaking trail to get to the hospital,” Lindell said.

When the couple arrived, Lindell asked about getting a transfer via ambulance to Winnipeg, but said she was told EMS wasn’t running.

“That’s when the power went out,” she said. ‘The labour pains picked up really fast.”

On the upside, there was a doctor on site and staff were snowed in.

Lindell said over the next three hours, the power would come and go. 

Coby Quinn Lindell was born in the emergency room at 7:30 a.m., weighing eight pounds and five ounces. 

“Everything had to run smoothly,” she said.

“We were just operating on minimal light. We operated on a backup generator …. Other than that, it was pretty dark.”

Lindell said people were also using cell phone lights.

“When our power would go, there were no back up plans,” she said

Lindell, who is also a health care worker at the local hospital is relived and happy everything ran smoothly during the delivery.

She said the facilitate is not equipped to do epidurals, another reason she is so thankful the birth turned out well.

“If we had tried to go south, that baby would have born in the truck,” said Lindell.

“It was the perfect storm. To be able to say that your co-workers delivered your baby in your small town, it was as if it was the perfect storm and it was,” she said.