(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Shopping trolleys abandoned in parking lots of malls are inconveniencing shoppers looking for parking space or trying to remove their blocked cars, it is learnt.
Though most shopping centres have places where trolleys should be kept after use (called trolley corrals), most shoppers neglect the practice or are lazy to return them to the corrals after removing their last grocery bag into their cars.
Instead they choose to push trolleys away, leaving them behind parked vehicles.
"It's common after shopping in a mall to find your car blocked with trolleys behind it. Then you have to remove one by one and take them back to their place," said Abdullah Badr, a Sudanese shopper at a hypermarket.
"It is also frustrating to see a parking space blocked by an abandoned trolley. The shopper must either leave the car in the parking space and take care of the trolley or find another space."
The negligence is mostly due to the belief that malls must have staff to collect the trolleys. Some have workers while others rely on their security guards for the purpose.
However, according to a Kenyan security guard who was collecting carts at a shopping centre, the responsibility lies on the shoppers to return their trolleys to the designated area. "We are supposed to collect a trolley once a shopper does not leave it in the designated area.
"It's not that we don't want to do our work. We are so busy striking a balance between keeping abandoned trolleys from hitting cars and guiding traffic," he said.
He said some shoppers had complained that abandoned trolleys had dented the finish of their vehicles.
"If a trolley pushed by the wind hits a parked car, who is responsible?" he asked. "And this is a common occurrence as trolleys can move freely in parking lots."
He said there were also instances when shoppers took the trolleys far beyond the designated area and because the guard had to account for every cart, they had to go in almost all the neighbourhood looking for them.
Some shopping centres don't employ such workers and expect every shopper to take the responsibility and leave the trolley in the designated area.
"Putting something where it belongs is not a bad idea. The idea is not that you just move the trolley out of the way so it does not damage other vehicles.
"The idea is that efforts should be exerted to return it to its place," said Nayem Mohammed, a shopper at Al Meera Shopping centre on Airport Road.
According to him, some families are reluctant to leave trolleys at the designated area because they are scared to leave their children in their cars, but most trolley corrals are only a few seconds walk.
"If you're so scared to leave kids in the car for 30 seconds or so while you return the trolley to its place, don't bring them with you.
"There is no excuse for leaving a trolley in the middle of the parking lot," he said.
He said malls should introduce coin-operated trolleys in which a shopper has to put a coin in a slot to use the cart because they will leave such trolleys back in the corrals to get their coins.
Some shoppers complained about the sight of abandoned trolleys and said it ruins the image of the mall's parking lot while others claimed trolleys block the area meant for walking to reach their cars.