I was travelling to my parents’ cottage for a little visit this summer. While my mind was thinking about the fun we would have at the cottage, a big transport truck came racing up behind me. As the truck approached from behind, I quickly shifted my focus from fun at the cottage to the immediate problem of making sure the truck could pass safely. After passing me on a flat strech of highway, my mind shifted to the ModShopper shopping and retail website. I don’t think I would of connected the passing truck to “shopping” if the truck wasn’t a big advertisement for Walmart. What specifically struck me was the part on the truck that says “We drive with our lights on for safety”. I wonder if Walmart thinks a speeding truck with its lights on is a safer truck than a speeding truck without its lights on.
As the truck pulled away, I started to think beyond the safety of my son and myself. It moved to the bigger question about consumer safety. Not just of the products that you take home with you, but also about how products are made and what happens before they reach the store shelf. I may be wrong, but it seems to me that today’s shoppers have more on their minds than just low everday prices. Prices may be a key part of the equation, but surely shoppers want to spend their money from stores and product producers that have low prices AND are also good corporate citizens.
As for truck/highway safety and being a good corporate citizen, I recently read about a court ruling here in Ontario that said the government cannot force truck drivers to use speed regulators which stop the truck drivers from speeding. I also found another article applicable in the US were the National Retail Federation (NRF) is supporting less truck driver regulation … “NRF Joins Truck Driver Regulations Fight“.
The real question I have is not whether government regulations are good or bad. The real question to me is whether retailers care about their customers’s safety more than they care about getting paid at a cash register. If they do, governement regulations will take care of themselves.
I’ll let the Truck Safety experts debate the merits of specific truck regulations. I sure hope they do a good job, because I feel the the safety of millions of families traveling on our highways is as important as getting everyday low prices.