Southern California breaking news and trends

Did Carmageddon drive up the local birthrate?

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Photo by Alipyon via Flickr Creative Commons

A small wave of local newborns may be pointing to a pocket of parents that opted to get down when they couldn't get out during last summer's "Carmageddon."

NBC LA has been working with Cedars-Sinai medical center, "where more babies are born west of the Mississippi than anywhere else in the country," to try and determine if there is an actual, quantifiable post-Carmageddon spike in regional birthrate.

"Our prenatal classes are fuller than they often are, so it may be a premonition that there might be more women delivering nine months after Carmageddon,” said Dr. Sarah Kilpatrick, chair of the OB/GYN department.

Carmageddon, last July's 405 freeway shutdown, kept many people in their neighborhoods lest they face a traffic snarl of biblical proportions. 

LA County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky is skeptical about the alleged baby boom, noting, "they said the same thing about the power failure back in New York City in the 1960s. Turned out to be a myth. I suspect it will turn out to be a myth here."

Those interested in proving him wrong will get a chance at romance once again when the freeway shuts down for round two this summer. 

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