A self-braking shopping trolley has been invented to prevent children causing chaos during supermarket trips.
Doing the weekly food shop is stressful enough, but throw a bored child into the mix and the stress levels can be off the scale.
Often the only thing to keep the little darlings entertained is to let them “drive” the shopping trolley.
But that inevitably leads to accidents when they helpfully career into that stack of beans/another trolley/a fellow shopper’s ankles. Ouchy!
So Ford has created the self-braking trolley prototype in a bid to improve the supermarket experience for parents (and other unwitting shoppers).
Drawing on its pre-collision technology used in many of its car models, experts at Ford fitted the trolley with sensors so they can detect people and objects ahead.
It warns the driver of the detection, and if there is no response, the system automatically applies the brakes to prevent a potential accident. Genius!
Speaking about the design Anthony Ireson, director of marketing communications at Ford of Europe, said: “Pre-Collision Assist technology can help our customers avoid accidents or mitigate the effects of being involved in a collision.
“We thought that showing how similar thinking could be applied to a shopping trolley would be a great way to highlight what can be a really useful technology for drivers.”
Parenting expert Tanith Carey, author of What’s My Child Thinking? Practical Child Psychology For Modern Parents said: “Parents often dread supermarket shopping because they are trying to get a job done and kids just want to play.
“Children love to copy adults and experiment with feeling more in control. When they push a trolley, to their minds, it’s like they are behind the wheels of a car – with long, wide supermarket aisles as their racetrack.”
Sadly, however, the car manufacturer has no plans to make the self-braking trolleys available to the public.