FlexSafe Shopping Cart Sanitizer

Patent-pending shopping cart sanitizing system developed by Alliance Manufacturing, Inc.

FlexSafe logo

Alliance Manufacturing, Inc., experts in industrial parts washers and cleaning systems, has recently developed FlexSafe, a patent-pending sanitizing system for shopping carts. This system is designed for the retail and grocery market, to help increase in-store traffic by making shopping cart handling safe and efficient. With FlexSafe, retail and grocery customers are given peace of mind, which may help ease the anxiety of an in-person visit to the store. Customers will be more likely to shop at stores that are committed to cleaning and sanitation policies. With the FlexSafe shopping cart sanitizer, you can create a safer environment for your customers, and and a more productive use of employee labor.

Shopping carts placed and ready to be sanitized
Gantry fully extended, ready to dry
Movable gantry extending while sanitizing
FlexSafe in cart bay

How it Works

FlexSafe is patent-pending, so it is different from other available products.  Here is how it works:

  1. Carts are pushed into the sanitizing lane, either manually or with a cart pusher.
  2. The movable gantry sprays the carts with an EPA approved, food-safe sanitizing agent, while the expandable bellows contains everything within the unit.
  3. After the gantry is fully extended, the high-velocity blowoff system strips excess sanitizing agent from the carts as it retracts back to the home position.
  4. The system is then ready for the next batch of carts to be processed. Sanitized carts are pushed out and replaced with soiled carts.

Benefits of FlexSafe

Here are some key benefits that separate our system from competing technologies:

  • FITS EXISTING STORE LAYOUTS – FlexSafe is designed to fit directly into your existing cart corral or cart lobby, whether a pass-through or dead-end layout. And, it uses standard utility hook-ups, such as 120VAC power and a garden hose connector.
  • FLEXIBLE CONFIGURATIONS – The name FlexSafe refers to the unit’s ability to be flexible in length and process configuration. For every ten feet in machine length, an additional ten carts can be added to the cycle.
  • NO SPECIAL HANDLING – FlexSafe does not require any special handling by the cart attendant, and it’s simple to operate. Carts are pushed through the machine as they would normally flow through the lobby.
  • NO BURDEN ON THE CUSTOMER – FlexSafe is intended to be operated by the cart attendant, instead of placing the burden on the customer.
  • MACHINE CONSISTENCY – A machine is consistent and can perform a repeatable process of sanitizing and drying, as opposed to an inconsistent manual process. It can thoroughly process carts in a fraction of the time of an individual, saving on labor costs. FlexSafe can even be used for other communal wheeled devices such as airport luggage dollies or hospital wheelchairs.
  • EPA APPROVED SANITIZER– With FlexSafe, you get the efficacy of EPA-approved products that are designed to kill coronaviruses and other harmful germs. Other technologies like UV light are not EPA-approved.
  • PEACE OF MIND – your customers will see a unique machine in your cart lobby designed for their personal safety. This may relieve the fear and anxiety that comes from an in-person visit to the store. Knowing that you are taking the extra steps for the customer says a lot about your business.

FlexSafe can be configured to sanitize hospital wheelchairs.

FlexSafe can be customized to sanitize airport luggage carts.

How can conventional brick-and-mortar retailers set themselves apart from their competition during and after a pandemic? This is a broad topic; but one answer to this question may be in the sanitization process of shopping carts.

Retailers need to be prepared to make in-store visits as safe and convenient as possible to combat the influx of online buying. Burdens have been placed on the shopper, which makes competing with the convenience of online shopping more difficult.  “Self-bag”, “self-check,” and now “wipe your cart” have been added to the customer to-do list. If we ask too much of the in-person shopper, added to growing fears and anxiety about the spread of germs, customers may limit their in-store purchases to curbside pick-up or grab-and-go, which reduces the potential for unexpected and impulse purchases that the customer may have otherwise made.

There has always been an awareness of bacteria, viruses, and other germs which might be present on a shopping cart that others have used and touched. Pre-COVID, it was common to see stores providing sanitizing wipes for the customers to wipe down their cart prior to use. Again, another burden was placed on the shopper, and the consumption of single-use wipes has created a waste problem in and of itself. Now it is common to see employees stationed in the cart bay wiping down carts, but this adds a labor burden when their time could be better used in other ways.

We are now pleased to offer in-store customers a shopping cart that has been consistently sanitized by a machine-controlled process.  The FlexSafe cart sanitizer is designed to sanitize frequently used shopping carts for high-traffic, high-volume store environments.

COVID will not continue forever, but the lingering effects and possible future pandemics could have a lasting impact on how consumers view their in-store shopping experience. Beyond COVID, we should be looking at ways that we can limit the spread of infectious disease such as influenza or even the common cold.  Those who plan today will gain the trust of their customers into the future.

To find out which FlexSafe model would work best based on your cart volume and lobby configuration, contact us today.

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