Monday, October 17, 2011

Press Release: Volunteers put wayward shopping carts in their place

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October 5, 2011

Cathy M. Schrock
Civilian Operations Manager

Volunteers put wayward shopping carts in their place

Federal Way retailers saved over $480,000 in assets from shopping carts returned by the Police Department’s volunteer Cart Recovery Team. The team’s five volunteers were recognized at Tuesday’s Council meeting for their contribution to keeping Federal Way beautiful.

“Our volunteers are picking up about 400 carts a month, preventing the eyesores that abandoned shopping carts are causing in other cities,” Commander Chris Norman told the Council during a report on the program’s first year.

The Police Department began the Cart Recovery Team program in September 2010 as an innovative approach to addressing abandoned shopping carts. The program is composed of five volunteers, who use a Police Department volunteer vehicle and a converted trailer to transport carts.

The Cart Recovery Team is Frank Gabreluk, Dan Goede, Mari Ikeda-Gomes, Lottie Kinney and John McLaren.

In its first year the team has returned 3,456 usable shopping carts to over forty Federal Way retailers, saving businesses an average of $140 per cart. In addition to the $438,840 in returned carts, the team has recycled 2,690 pounds of unusable carts for scrap metal. Citizens can report abandoned shoppings carts on the City’s cart hotline at 253.835.6774 or online at The City averages about 18 calls a month to the cart hotline. Team members also use Safe City cameras to identify abandoned carts.


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