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Self-braking trolley bid to end supermarket smashes

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The prototype could one day help parents avoid messy collisions caused by bored children during the food shop.

A self-braking trolley

A shopping trolley that is able to brake automatically when a possible collision is detected has been invented in a bid to prevent bored children causing chaos as their parents do the food shop.

Ford has created the prototype self-braking trolley, which is fitted with sensors to spot people and objects ahead, similar to the technology used in many of its car models to detect other vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists on the road.

“Parents often dread supermarket shopping because they are trying to get a job done and kids just want to play,” said parenting expert Tanith Carey, author of What’s My Child Thinking? Practical Child Psychology For Modern Parents

“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 for parents, the car-maker has no plans to make the self-braking trolley experiment available to the public.

“Pre-Collision Assist technology can help our customers avoid accidents or mitigate the effects of being involved in a collision,” said Anthony Ireson, director for marketing communications at Ford of Europe.

“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.”

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