Passenger gives birth on bus at Woodlands checkpoint stop

The yet-to-be-named daughter of Ms Suhana Agus Abdul Salam, a 26-year-old Malaysian, was born several weeks early on SBS Transit service 170X.
The yet-to-be-named daughter of Ms Suhana Agus Abdul Salam, a 26-year-old Malaysian, was born several weeks early on SBS Transit service 170X.ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

A woman gave birth to a baby girl on a public bus that had stopped at Woodlands Checkpoint yesterday morning.

Ms Suhana Agus Abdul Salam was heading back to her home in Johor Baru on SBS Transit service 170X - which runs from Kranji MRT station to Kotaraya Bus Terminal in Johor - when she felt sudden pain in her abdomen.

"It felt as though I had to go to the toilet and then I couldn't take it any more," she told The Straits Times yesterday.

As the pain got more severe, she realised she was going to give birth and began wailing for help.

"I was shocked and frightened," the 26-year-old Malaysian said. "I didn't expect the baby to come yet."

SBS Transit bus captain Er Ah Bing, 58, who was behind the wheel, promptly informed immigration officers at the checkpoint and told them to ring for an ambulance.

At least two female passengers went to help Ms Suhana, he said. "She was in a lot of pain. I was hoping that the ambulance would come quickly."

Ms Suhana said one female passenger helped pull down her pants. She then gave birth to her daughter while sitting on the chair: "The baby just popped out."

She had already given birth by the time an ambulance arrived some time after 7am. The delivery took only about 10 minutes, Mr Er estimated. He drove the bus back to Bukit Batok for cleaning after the ambulance took Ms Suhana to hospital.

Ms Suhana has not yet named her daughter - her first child. She said she had visited Singapore to do some sightseeing and had been expecting to give birth later this month. Her husband will take her from hospital today, she added.

It is the first time in more than a decade that a passenger has given birth on an SBS Transit bus, said its senior vice-president for corporate communications Tammy Tan.

She added: "It was a totally unexpected and yet delightful event. We are glad that mother and child are doing well."

roysim@sph.com.sg

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