Local supermarket Best Buy has followed SKELEC’s Smart Meter move and has installed what it is dubbing “smart carts”. The smart carts are designed to tackle the shopping cart cartels that have menaced St Kitts for nearly a decade now.
The smart carts are designed to prevent the carts from being taken beyond a parking lot by using a wheel with a sensor that locks up when taken past a yellow line. The recommended installation is to put the magic yellow line around the parking lot, thus allowing customers to take the carts to their cars but not beyond the parking lot.
This recommended installation however was not good enough for Best Buy and they tweaked it. Instead of allowing you to take the cart to the parking lot, they put the yellow lines of cart death just steps from the door of the store. This has had the effect of people having to drag carts to the parking lot or unload immediately in front of the door creating a huge mess in an already poorly designed parking lot.
When asked about the new smart carts, Best Buy’s senior manager of the new smart cart department John “Traffic Jam” Mooning was very enthusiastic. “Before this system we would lose a few carts now and then. Now we are losing fewer carts and we do not even have to collect them from the parking lots any more. The fact that this creates a traffic nightmare both of carts and vehicles is of little concern to us. We like our carts.”
When asked about how this would impact the elderly and others who needed the carts to carry many heavy bags of groceries to their cars and no longer could, Mooning simply responded “Once the groceries are bought and paid for, it’s not our problem any more.”
We have since visited Best Buy and apparently some customers provided them with “feedback” and the borders seem to have been expanded as our cart was able to make it more than a few feet out the door. From the lines it now appears carts can reach the smaller of the two parking lots, but even there is touchy. While taking our cart to our car, right in the middle of the parking lot where there were no boundaries to be had our cart locked up randomly.