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A Baby on Board sign rant


Please be warned this blog post is a bit of a rant.

We don’t have a “Baby on Board” sign.

We probably never will.

They irritated me immensely because I didn’t understand them. My irritation was further fuelled when I started to see rather smug “Little Princess on board” or “Mummy’s little hero on board” signs or similar.

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All I could think was that parents display them to encourage other drivers to drive extra carefully around their car, to avoid bumping you. But really? Personally I give every driver the same care and consideration, whether they have a baby on board or not. If you’re the kind of person that drives like an idiot will a “Baby on Board” sign make you tame your ways? Will you even see it in time? Probably and sadly not.

Or maybe it’s because you’re a very proud parent and want everyone around you to know? Again, not a theory I give much credit to.

I saw another one this morning and this time I thought that rather than get wound up each time I see a sign I should really do some of my own research to see if anyone else knows the reason behind them. All my irritation could be very misplaced and maybe we’re missing out on a very important car accessory.

Baby on board

So I googled them!

One very credible reason some people display them is to warn paramedics that there is an infant in the car so that in the event of a car crash they know who to find and rescue first. However according to a poll of 2,000 drivers (quoted in this Telegraph article in 2012) 46% of drivers display them irrespective of whether infants are in the car or not. You do have to wonder how many paramedics waste precious time searching for babies in the car, rather than saving the other passengers. I’d be very interested to hear how many paramedics take notice of the signs or see them in the first place. It’s quite likely that the glass they are stuck to would shatter in an accident in any case, and therefore the sign would be lost. Apparently 15% of the drivers surveyed displayed them for the novelty value. The article then goes on to say that the signs may actually obscure drivers’ vision through the car’s rear view. I’m not so sure that you could blame them for accidents.

However this isn’t actually how the signs came about in the first place.

Apparently an American called Michael Lerner was told about the signs after recounting his experience of aggressive drivers when driving drive his baby nephew home in busy traffic. A German company had tried to market them in the US with little success, until Michael bought the company, renamed it Safety 1st and it took off, selling many other baby safety products alongside the signs.

According to Wikipedia “In 1993, The Simpsons episode “Homer’s Barbershop Quartet” featured a barbershop quartet tune called “Baby on Board”. The song was written by Homer Simpson in a flashback to 1985 when Marge bought a sign, hoping it would stop people from “intentionally ramming our car”.”

More recently, in 2005, Transport for London started issuing Baby on board badges to pregnant commuters. Now that is a good idea. I wished I’d known about this when I’d had to commute into London when pregnant with my first.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

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About Me:

My name is Emma and I have three (!) wonderful babies. The oldest is my daughter Elsa, born in 2011 the second is “Milk & Mummy” my online boutique selling beautiful breastfeeding clothes and launched in 2012, and the youngest is my son Oliver, born in August 2014. All three exhaust me, excite me and make me proud on a daily basis and naturally all vie for my attention! But of course I wouldn't have it any other way.


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Milk & Mummy sells stylish nursing clothes including nursing tops and nursing dresses. We have everything from casual breastfeeding tops for a day at home to glamorous breastfeeding dresses for weddings. Many of our nursing dresses are also maternity dresses and we also sell beautiful breastfeeding covers and cute baby dribble bibs.

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Milk & Mummy is a trading name of EG Downie Ltd, a company registered in England and Wales. Company number: 07812071