Shocking solution to trolley thefts

WELLINGTON Shire Council will roll out a new program designed to combat shopping trolley dumping throughout the district.

Currently, shopping trolleys are accumulating in residents’ yards, in streets, and even local waterways, so council has been examining ways to ensure they are returned to car park trolley bays, where they belong.

It is enlisting the cooperation of supermarkets across the shire in allocating specific zones trolleys will be confined to, through a state-of-the-art, centrally-controlled, trolley “monitoring” system.

If trolleys stray out of their zones, an automated system will deliver a mild shock to trolley pushers — a gentle reminder to return trolleys to their charging bays.

Council chief health officer Lukin Peaky has assured the public the trollies won’t pose a health risk.

“The trolley handles will deliver more of a tingle than a shock — it won’t hertz much at all,” he chuckled at his own little joke.

“You’d get more zap from a mozzie.”

He did, however, warn those with pacemakers to consult their doctors before pushing trolleys.

Council finance officer Owen Money said the multi-million dollar system would be funded by rates and the state government’s Off Your Trolley program.

He added while he expected plenty of resistance, the scheme was necessary and would require a small charge on rates until people conducted themselves properly.

A battery of early local trials drew a positive response, with council’s chief electrician, Dwight Spark, giving the project a de-lighted thumbs up.

“There is a slight shock, yes, but it didn’t really phase me,” he said.

Notably eyebrowless, Mr Spark explained to Behind the Times his lack of facial hair was in fact due to an electrolysis mishap, and was definitely, completely 100 per cent nothing to do with the trolley trials.

Local resident Carly Crosswires said she had been melan-trolley ever since she heard the initiative, describing it as “revolting”.

She has formed an organisation to fight the move, WATTS, or Wellingtonites Against Troubling Trolley Shocks.

Ms Crosswires has already been inundated with phone calls, adding she was ex-static about the support she was receiving.

“It’s quite heartening, I mean, I’m certainly amped,” she said.

“I feel confident we’ll defeat this — we con-du-it.

“It’s just shocking the council and supermarkets would do this,” she said.

“What about people with medical conditions? What about wildlife landing on the trolleys?”

It was at this point the Behind noticed a suspicious metal jumble, about three metres high, concealed under a tarp in Ms Crosswire’s backyard.

When questioned about the mass, particularly the protruding wheels, Ms Crosswires quickly deflected.

“That’s nothing! It’s a playground we’re building! No further questions!”

Supermarket outlet spokesperson Aldie Coleworths said he was not concerned about fears that birds might be “fried” if they landed on the wire parts of the trolley.

“Of course that won’t happen,” he assured Behind. But he did mention the supermarket would be offering specials on small cooked chickens for the foreseeable future.