By in Animals

Anthony's Shopping Cart Issues for February 6, 2019

Yes, I put this article under the category of Animals for a good reason. People who shop sometimes behave like wild animals IMO.

Anthony's Shopping Cart Issues for February 6, 2019

Yesterday was like any other day for us to go shopping at the local Walmart Supercenter south of Dallas, on the outskirts of the city into the city of Duncanville.

Looking for a Ride-a-long Electric powered Amigo shopping cart at a Walmart Supercenter is like looking for the proverbial needle in a giant haystack!

Most if not all of the electric powered shopping carts are gone!

For a lot of old people, God bless them, getting around a Super Center Walmart without assistance has become a difficult to near impossible task, because I am getting near that ripe old age of 100 myself. I won't say just how far past the 11 mark on a 12 inch ruler but suffice it to say, I can relate!

Every time I go to Walmart or Kroger for that matter, it is always about the same for me when I am looking to find my wife an electric power driven 'Amigo' shopping cart for the elderly and disabled and I walk the entire perimeter of the store's parking lot if I do not see on in the entrance lobby and often times the greeter tells me more or less that 'THERE ARE NO AVAILABLE ELECTRIC SHOPPING CARTS' - or I see a man or a woman at the cash register, paying for their purchase and I have to go up to them and ask them "Sir/Miss - Can I take that cart when you are finished loading your items in your car?" And the normal response is - "Yes." So I go out with them to their vehicle, assist them in unloading their purchase and thank them for the cart."

This is simply because in spite of the fact that normally these stores have about 8 to 10 electric shopping carts for the physically challenged and the elderly, most if not all of them are either out of power, non-functional, or their electric cord is either missing or broken off at the prongs, because of people driving not removing the cord from the electrical outlet and they break off the prongs and last but not the least issue is that the store managers or supervisors or greeters will tell me that - "Those electric carts have been stolen by customers, who drive them off the store property and leave them off at the side of the road when they run out of power."

We drove to one Walmart Supercenter to shop for Superbowl Sunday and found the store to be completely out of them. We drove our old 95 Caddy to the other Walmart Supercenter, located to our South-East by 12 or more miles in the other direction only to find 5 broken down Amigo electrical powered shopping carts against the side of the building, totally out of commission, next to where shopping carts are returned to the inside store lobby where the courtesy clerks return them back to the inside of the store.

It was another case of Neglectfulness at the Hands Of The Customers who abused the privilege of their use. If people who shopped at these stores had any idea of the expense that is necessary to maintain these Amigo Shopping Carts, maybe they would be more careful. So here is a list of Do's and Don'ts for Joe Public.

1. If you are handicapped and actually require one of these Amigo Carts to get around and do your shopping, first look to make sure the cart is plugged into an electrical outlet and that it is fully charged.

2. Unplug the electric cord from the wall outlet and place the pronged end on the hook at the back of the seat, where it will be properly held in place as you drive your cart and do your shopping.

3. Turn on you cart at the front right side toggle switch so you will be able to ride it. A lighted indicator will show that the Amigo cart is fully charged or at least, partially charged. Two types of indicators are on two different designs. One is a progressive red indicator that has several bars from left to right, that light up fully on the front panel to let the customer know that the cart is fully charged and ready to ride. The second variant of the Electric powered shopping cart is Yellow, meaning the cart is not fully powered and needs more time to charge. Orange, for medium power so you might be able to ride it but it will not be fully charged until the light turns Green, indicating a complete charge.

4. Observe the weight limit on the cart. It has a basket in front that provides the customer to place their items in and has a limited weight capacity to carry an individual, that is under 300 or more pounds. Most people who are severely overweight have to use these carts because their weight impedes their walking but due to the limited weight load capacity of these carts, you have to realize that if you weigh upwards of 400 pounds, the cart's motor will not have full capacity and it may simply break down. The maximum weight load capacity to carry a person who needs to use it to get around in the store to shop along with it's front loading basket for groceries and other items is indicated on the sign or should be, so that users of this cart understand the weight load capacity of this type of Mobilized Shopping Cart.

5. Do not take your cart out of the store to your vehicle unless you are accompanied by a store clerk who can return the cart inside and place it in the proper charging location in the store so it will be out of the weather, and be ready for the next customer for use. If you notice, there is a sign on most of these carts that indicates FOR STORE USE ONLY. That means the person riding on it should be able to at least get up with assistance and have someone drive the vehicle to the store entrance and pick up the customer, but this is not always the case.

Case in point: Most times, the rider of a Motorized Shopping Cart will ride our of the store all the way to the handicapped parking area to their vehicle, and often times, leave the cart beside the vehicle and after they drive their vehicle away, the cart will just stay there, in the parking lot, taking up the parking space, blocking access to a parking space and thus make it mandatory that a clerk retrieve it ASAP so it will be back in the store, sitting pretty and charging.

The bottom line is, people who take advantage of these Mobile Shopping Carts should be advised to read the instructions on the sign mounted on the basket of most carts, follow the instructions and take care and observe where they are moving along in the store so as not to have an accident. Ask for assistance if you need to take your groceries to your parked vehicle. Do not assume it is okay to ride it to the very end of the parking lot, if you had to park further out from the designated parking lot area for handicapped parking. Most carts are equipped with an alarm and locking system that will stop the cart from being driven beyond a certain limited area of the parking lot.

This is to prevent theft, and for the safety of the person riding that cart. It can be often, very dangerous to ride a cart out into the parking lot. People are driving along that same area, and not always fully observant so there is a definite risk to the customer on the Mobilized cart and a definite risk of liability to the drivers of vehicles who may or may not be as careful as they should be and accidents do happen. So be careful.

I am writing this article in hopes that all customers learn from it and show other people proper respect and caution when doing their daily shopping at such stores that use these Powered Mobilized Carts. It is in hope that in the future, people will be more courteous, considerate, safe and sound when they do their shopping.

I know that one day I too will be older and I might require the use of one of these Amigo carts.

Below is a list of links to look at about the Amigo Cart company online and one additional link about the statistics of using such types of carts for retail stores that you might like to take a closer look at:

Mobilized Shopping Cart at Wikipedia.com

Here is a link to the Amigo Cart company: https://www.myamigo.com/our-products/grocery-retail/motorized-shopping-carts/

https://www.myamigo.com/product/smartshopper/

https://www.myamigo.com/product/smartshopper/


Image Credit » https://cdn.pixabay.com/photo/2017/11/15/20/48/shopping-cart-2952531_960_720.png

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Comments

MegL wrote on February 6, 2019, 10:52 AM

Unfortunately, people in general will not read instructions or else will think "That doesn't apply to me" or basically, won't care. It's the old saying "I'm alright jack!"

lookatdesktop wrote on February 6, 2019, 8:05 PM

If half the people read this article maybe the statistics about broken down Amigo motorized electrical shopping carts would go down a little bit. Just a thought.

VinceSummers wrote on February 6, 2019, 9:45 PM

There are, I believe, ways for stores to put alarms on carts so they can't be taken beyond a certain perimeter. Do you think the store figures, "It's the younger people who have the money to spend, not the old ones, so why go to a lot of trouble catering to them?"

lookatdesktop wrote on February 6, 2019, 11:59 PM

You and I both know that lots of the elderly spend large amounts of money. So those stores know better.

VinceSummers wrote on February 7, 2019, 7:16 AM

To us it's a large amount. To be honest, though, compared to the young folks, with the exception of the very well-to-do, who are not likely to be in Walmart all that much, it is comparatively little. But as to the weight limit on the carts, I weigh 305 lbs. But they don't weigh you, do they? I'm not going to lose any sleep if I ever start using the carts. What suffices for me is short shopping visitations wherever I go and leaning over the cart. When we grocery shop, my wife and I -both- take a small cart through the store.

Last Edited: February 7, 2019, 8:28 AM