Shopping trolleys loss right to be free range

Thumper 16 January 2008 35

As always, the Stanhope government is attacking the big issues, this time by being tough on abandoned shopping trolleys.

According to the SMH online, the ACT government plans to introduce tougher laws requiring retailers to retrieve dumped shopping trolleys or face penalties. Retailers will be forced to clearly mark trolleys so they can be identified by government officials.

Chief Minister Jon Stanhope said there was little incentive for retailers to collect and dispose of dumped trolleys in a responsible manner.

Personally, if I were a shop owner and I received a fine from the ACT government, I’d have no option but to pass it on to my consumers. I might even get rid of trolleys if I were a small operator, or use those incredibly annoying pay for a trolley things.

In addition, most of these abandoned shopping trolleys are from people without cars who wheel the things incredible distances. These people are generally some of the poorer in our society and probably can’t afford cars. And as we know, the buses are pretty useless these days in the suburbs.

The issue is a tricky one. Firstly, I agree that shopping trolleys wandering the streets late at night are an eyesore and should be rounded up. However, I don’t think shopkeepers should foot the bill for people taking, and NOT returning them. (Admittedly big operators like Coles and Woolies could easily afford this)

At present rangers locate the trolleys and then remove them which is what they should do as it is our taxes that are paying for the rangers, and the service. However, the current government slashed ranger services and seem to think that everything in this town, except for bizarre statues and works of art, should be user pays.

An interesting dilemma. And maybe Stanhope is right about penalising the shopowners. However, it does appear to me that once again Stanhope is not addressing the real issue, which is people flogging the things in the first place. maybe there should be a fine for taking a shopping trolley further than 200 metres from a store?

[Ed. Ari is also quick to point out how dangerous these steel menaces can be in the wrong hands]

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35 Responses to Shopping trolleys loss right to be free range
p1 p1 2:41 pm 15 Apr 09

Nice thread resurrection! 🙂

Instead of a $2 coin, you could swipe a keycard, and if the trolley isn’t returned within, say, six hours it takes $50 out of your account.

Or, instead of the $2, make the trolleys take 10 cent coins. Most people will not bother taking them back, but some ten year old will roam the car park to collect enough to buy something.

get-off-your-lazy get-off-your-lazy 1:54 pm 15 Apr 09

Aldi has got it right. Their trolleys, and supermarkets are generally cleaner because people are obligated to return them – and that is one of the reasons their prices are cheaper. We help them with the small act of returning a trolley and they help us with cheaper prices. It’s not like we are walking 30kms to return it is it! How lazy are Canberrans?!?

Abandoned shopping trolleys are just a reflection of the blatant laziness of the general population and total disregard people have for our environment. I am sure people can say they have seen abandoned shopping trolleys in the strangest of places. Are there really people dumping trolleys where they are living IN Lake Ginninderra, or IN the bushes nearby, or ON the median strip of major roads around Canberra? They are unsightly reminder of people’s lack of respect for their surroundings. The average size of shoppers’ backsides also reflects this general laziness. Perhaps enforcing rules about returning shopping trolleys might encourage our rapidly increasing obese population to get some exercise! Why not take a back pack to the supermarket if you are walking? Or buy one of those fold-up trolleys?

Get off your lazy big #*tts and just return the trolleys Canberra – please!

Mælinar Mælinar 1:42 pm 17 Jan 08

put up a bloody sign then. I really don’t care how they will get around the law, the fact is they will.


astrojax astrojax 11:36 am 17 Jan 08

maelinar wrote: All the company needs to do is declare that if a trolley is taken more than 200m from the shop, it’s theft

well, no, that doesn’t stand up. in law, there are several elements of onus of proof for a prosecution and for theft they include, with ‘the taking away’, etc, ‘the intent to permanently deprive the owner of possession’.

so you [or a propieter, or anyone] ‘declaring’ anything and want that to be enough proof at law for a statute offence is naive and silly and you should be spanked at once.


vandam vandam 10:16 pm 16 Jan 08

ahh this is such a great thread! a good old fashioned bagging on our minister! I love it!
But on the issue of trolleys, it’s the supermarkets that lose out.
they go missing = less trollies, and less customers. The companies pay for the trolleys and pay for contractors to pick them up! maybe they should pay a small fee for trollies picked up by the rangers, rather than fining them!

Oh and isnt that ‘art’ thing on the Barton hwy made out of trolleys????

swamiOFswank swamiOFswank 8:41 pm 16 Jan 08

Ummm…I just use a 5c in the Aldi trolleys at Kippax. It works for about 50% of them. Then I just leave the trolley in the carpark when I’m done. It’s a great way to get rid of those pesky 5c pieces!

toriness toriness 8:18 pm 16 Jan 08

my vote is for farout or sammy’s ideas – namely that the trolley explodes if taken more than 100m from the supermarket or the user is handcuffed to the trolley until they relinquish it. although considering i am not a trolley thief myself and one of my personal hates is the rogue trolley eyesores around town – the exploding trolley policy sounds like a real winner, and has flow-on effects of getting rid of the dodgers in town.

MelonHead MelonHead 7:22 pm 16 Jan 08

John, you’ve done it again. Tackled the big issues.

But seriously, the cost of trolleys, and the cost of collecting them from all points of the compass does not come out of company profits. These costs are added on to every item for every customer. This means either take your trolley back to the shop when you are finished with it (in my dreams) or take as many as you want, for whatever purpose you want, and anywhere you want.

I am in favour of any shop that does not let trolleys out of their sight.

Thumper Thumper 6:28 pm 16 Jan 08

Or commission a work of art….

Nemo Nemo 6:18 pm 16 Jan 08

I’m waiting for Stanhope to propose a memorial to all the damaged shopping trollies.

Thumper Thumper 6:06 pm 16 Jan 08

Ye, fix my typo, please….

GnT GnT 5:18 pm 16 Jan 08

Hate to say it but ALDI … seem to have got the procedure right from the outset.

You take a trolley from Coles next door and wheel it into Aldi to do your shopping, then straight out to the car where you dump it wherever you like in the carpark.

Skidbladnir Skidbladnir 4:45 pm 16 Jan 08

Anyone want to fix up the typo in this article’s headline?

Sammy Sammy 4:44 pm 16 Jan 08

I don’t think it’d be unreasonable for the supermarket to handcuff you to the trolley, and then you return to the store once you’ve loaded your car, and they’ll untether you. Problem solved.

Mælinar Mælinar 4:37 pm 16 Jan 08

You guys obviously don’t live in Boganville. They learned that you can take 2, or alternatively, if Sheila and Rhonda both go down to the shops together, they can put the two together and get both coins back wherever they desire.

Plenty of examples around Kippax ALDI, although they are a bit quicker at picking them up than Woolies.

Another way I’ve seen done is they wheel the trolley home, use a screwdriver to open the money receptacle in the privacy of their own back yards, and then dump the trolley.

hingo_VRCalaisV6 hingo_VRCalaisV6 4:34 pm 16 Jan 08

Maybe Coles should sell those keyrings like ALDI do. They fit the slot so you don’t have to remember your $2 coin.

Ingeegoodbee Ingeegoodbee 4:32 pm 16 Jan 08

Coles in Manuka tried the $2 thing and abandoned it after a couple of months because people were avoiding shopping there – initially it was thought it was because people didn’t like the fact that they had to “remember” to bring along a $2 coin just so they could shop there, but with a little digging it was apparently revealed that folk were simply sick and tired of being hassled by junkies in the underground car park who badgered them for their trolley (so as to recover the $2) while they were trying to unload their groceries into the car.

hingo_VRCalaisV6 hingo_VRCalaisV6 4:20 pm 16 Jan 08

You only get stray ALDI trolleys out the front of mansions where they can afford to lose the 2 bucks.

Jonathon Reynolds Jonathon Reynolds 3:48 pm 16 Jan 08

Hate to say it but ALDI (with their superior German know how and awesomely competitive prices) seem to have got the procedure right from the outset.

You put your two dollar coin in the trolley (or alternatively an ALDI token on a key chain – available for purchase at their checkout) and when you return your trolley you get you coin deposit back. How simple and effective is that?

I do not think I have ever seen free range ALDI shopping trolleys roaming the streets.

pelican pelican 3:46 pm 16 Jan 08

I’m thinking locator chip and solar powered engine in the trolleys to allow remote control from the nearest satellite.

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