Following the success of the diamond shaped 'Child on board' and its Royal derivatives, 'Young Prince/princess on board' the government has announced that the scheme is going to be extended to all occupants of vehicles.
'We've been following the voluntary scheme for some years now and can see the benefits, so from April 2016 it will be compulsory for all vehicles being driven and containing people to display a 'persons on board' diamond prominently.
A spokesman for the Fire Brigades Union applauded the initiative. 'When our members are approaching a road traffic collision the thought uppermost in their mind is whether anyone was driving the vehicles before the crash, so this will really help,' he said, adding that the thought second to the uppermost one was whether the crash victims wanted a quote for the respray. Or some roof repairs.
The Office for National Statistics is less impressed with the initiative, though. 'Our research indicates that fewer than fifty percent of vehicles claiming to have a child on board actually do so. Extending this scheme is likely to increase the level of abuse. It may contribute to road safety by some small margin but is unlikely to make motoring statistically more relevant than it is now. I can see a situation where it will end up a shambles, as is the frequent claims that the owners of aging cars also own a Porche have shown to be largely incorrect, with fewer than three percent of such claims actually being correct.' Porche have disputed the ONS study as 'flawed' as they 'simply clocked bumper stickers on the road and pinged the DVLA database, it's hardly scientific.'
The government said that following the introduction of mandatory diamonds for all occupied cars in 2016 there would be a gradual phasing in of a full personnel manifest by 2020, identifying the number of adults, children and pets, segregated by gender and breed. It is not expected to include the mandatory reporting of grandparents on board, as suggested by Saga and Age Concern in a recent joint study, as there seems to be enough voluntary support for this already.