RENO, Nev. (AP) – It was just another day at work for Flora Vargas until a screaming woman burst into her Subway sandwich shop in Nevada on Friday and announced she was in labor.
After the pregnant woman raced for the women’s restroom, assistant manager Vargas and her boss sprang into action, placing sandwich wrappers and trash bags on the floor for sanitation.
With Vargas’ help, the mother gave birth on the restroom floor in Minden, 40 miles south of Reno, a couple minutes later.
“It was a boy. A beautiful boy,” Vargas told The Associated Press. “He didn’t cry when he came out. Then he cried, and I breathed easier knowing he was alive.”
No customers were in the restaurant at the time of the 9:30 a.m. birth, but the restaurant was open. The only employees inside were Vargas and the manager.
Vargas helped calm down the mother and get her on the restroom floor, she said, and it was “a blessing” that paramedics from the East Fork Fire and Paramedic District arrived in time to assist in the delivery.
“The head of the baby was already out when she went to the floor,” Vargas said. “The baby came out really, really fast. Fortunately, the emergency service people got here really fast.”
Paramedics transported the mother and child to Carson Tahoe Regional Medical Center, where hospital spokesman Jon Tyler said he could only disclose that both are healthy. Their names were not released.
Vargas said the mother told her that she was 21 and had three other children. The mother was accompanied by a sister at the time, she added.
East Fork Battalion Chief Ron Haskins said paramedics have delivered babies in odd places, but it’s the first birth on a restaurant restroom floor that he can recall during his 30 years with the district.
“We’ve delivered babies in cars and restrooms at home, but it’s all part of the job,” he said. “It’s one of the most positive parts of our job.”
When she entered the business, Vargas said, the mother was “screaming real bad, ‘I’m in labor. I’m going to have it right now.’ My manager said, ‘What should we do?’ I said, ‘It’s an emergency and we have to do something.’
“He and I grabbed Subway wrappers and trash bags and rags that we use in here, and put them on the restroom floor so there was sanitation. Everything happened so fast,” she added.
After the birth, the 30-year-old Vargas held the mother’s hand and assured her the boy was healthy. The mother reacted by “crying a bit but seemed to be OK,” she said.
Vargas said though she’s “really happy” about how things turned out, she urged her boss to provide training to employees on how to deliver babies.
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