Virgin birth: baby arrives on a jet plane

2012-10-20 00:00

A NEWBORN made an unexpected appearance on a flight from London to Johannesburg this week.

The baby boy was born on Virgin Atlantic’s flight VS601 from Heathrow to O.R. Tambo on Thursday night.

The airliner was hurriedly diverted to land at Palma de Mallorca, east of Spain.

The mother, who was 32 weeks pregnant, and the baby were taken to hospital in good condition, said Virgin spokesperson Bonita Boni.

She said she could not reveal the mother’s name or nationality.

Boni said women are allowed to fly up to 28 weeks of pregnancy. From 28 to 36 weeks, they must inform the airline and supply a doctor’s note. After 36 weeks, airlines will only take a woman in an emergency.

Cabin crew member Emma Goodman said the woman started contractions hours into the flight. “The crew … assisted her through the birth.

“The pilot announced the birth and everyone applauded. It was fantastic!” she said.

After landing at Palma, the plane was obliged to return to London, because the crew would have exceeded their permitted hours on duty.

Passengers were put on the next flight, Boni said.

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