Radio 2

AD Delhaize supermarket tests robot to disinfect trolleys

Supermarket trolleys have become mandatory in Belgium.  In this way supermarkets can check they are not admitting too many customers.  Often a member of staff will be on hand to disinfect the handle, but in one West Flemish supermarket they are now enlisting the assistance of an automated robot to do this chore.

The AD Dehaize in Roeselare claims to be the country’s first supermarket with a robot disinfecting the handle of your trolley.  Hopefully the robot will be able to help avoid the queues that can materialise outside supermarkets at busy times.  Usually a member of staff or student will disinfect your trolley, but in forward-thinking Roeselare a robot arm disinfects both the top and bottom of your trolley.

Geert Omez runs the local AD Delhaize: “Our thinking is trolleys will have to be disinfected for some considerable time.  In this time of year staff enjoy meeting customers in the sunshine, but when it’s cold and rainy they won’t be so enthusiastic”.

The robot’s been rented for a month to test it out.

“It worked perfectly for two days but on Saturday it wouldn’t start.  A Dutch firm is swinging by to carry out repairs” says Geert.

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