Land of abandoned trolleys
THEY’RE clogging up our footpaths, lying broken in parks, stuffed into bushes, even littering our waterways.
A quick drive and a look around Warwick will determine one thing, there are shopping trolleys everywhere.
The Daily News spotted 15 in five minutes and resident Ozzie Pike has had just about enough of it. “I notice them all the time,” he said. “I counted 19 the other day, just on Percy St.”
Mr Pike said it was a bad look for Warwick.
“If they’re so easy for us residents to spot, imagine what visitors and tourists must think,” he said. “It’s a disgrace.
“If people don’t want to follow the rules and push these things all over town, then they should at least have the decency to return them when they’re done.
“These supermarkets allow us to use these trolleys for free but they’re not under any obligation to ferry you and your groceries home.”
Australian Food News reported in 2012 that Woolworths, Safeway and Big W stores had about 300,000 shopping trolleys in more than 900 stores around Australia and the cost of collecting, maintaining and replacing trolleys each year was more than $50 million.
The website said about 5% of all trolleys were replaced each year, either because they went missing, were stolen or damaged beyond repair. The average trolley costs $150 to replace, while trolleys with special features, such as child seats, could cost up to $600.
Some supermarkets such as Aldi charge a fee for their trolleys with the incentive of a refund when returning the trolley.
Warwick Woolworths manager Sean Kratzke said the store had not considered charging for trolleys.
“I’m not sure about trolley losses either,” he said.
“But if residents are concerned about trolleys, give us a call and we’ll have them collected.”
More than 27 years ago, Newcastle media personality Chris Ford saw a niche market.
With his wife he started Trolley Tracker and today counts Woolworths and Big W as major clients Australia-wide.
“Concerned residents can phone 1800 641 497 with the location of a wayward trolley and we’ll send out the local contractors to collect it,” Mr Ford said.
“There is also the added bonus of a random $1000 prize for each state every month, for someone who calls in to report a trolley location.
“In 27 years we’ve taken 1.6 millions reports for lost trolleys.”
I counted 19 the other day, just on Percy St
— Ozzie Pike
FED UP: Warwick resident Ozzie Pike is unhappy with the amount of abandoned trolleys in Warwick.