The cabin crew who helped deliver a baby girl on a recent Turkish Airlines flight between Guinea and Burkina Faso have recounted the events, saying they all experienced a “miracle” together.
“We received training on the subject, but it was the first experience for all of us. There was no chance for the mother and the baby except for us. We did our best and we experienced a miracle together,” said Ayşe Evrim Fidan, a senior member of the cabin crew.
Diaby Nafi, an 18-year-old French-Guinean woman, went into labor about 50 minutes before a scheduled landing in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, on April 7. Normally, Turkish Airlines does not permit pregnant women to fly after 36 weeks and can only fly before 36 weeks with a doctor’s report indicating she is able to fly, but Nafi did not appear to be nine months pregnant and did not inform the crew about her condition.
Nafi attempted to explain to the cabin crew that she was going into labor with hand gestures as she does not speak English, according to crew member Demet Hocaoğlu.
After learning that there was no doctor on board the plane, crew members worked to deliver the child themselves. The brought Nafi to some empty seats and prepared first aid instruments and followed instructions from a guide.
Nafi successfully gave birth to a healthy baby girl, Kadiju, at an altitude of 13,000 meters.
Crew members stated that they had no time to cut the navel cord so they were obliged to clip it.
The whole birth reportedly took just 20 minutes.
Fidan said the birth was something unforgettable and that they had given the girl the middle name of Hatice.
The pilot of the flight, İrfan Kurşun Geçmez, also said passengers on the plane collected money for the new-born baby girl.