PASSENGERS at Scotland’s biggest bus station are being offered a first – a machine that wraps wet brollies to stop them dripping .
Entrepreneurs behind the clever gizmo hope rain-plagued Scots will fall in love with the technology, originally designed to prevent wet floors from posing a slippery safety risk.
The free service will be trialled for a month at Glasgow’s Buchanan Bus Station, which is used by 40,000 passengers on 1700 bus journeys every day.
It will feature two slots – one for golf brollies and another for normal sized umbrellas. Punters simply insert a wet brolly and in seconds it is sheathed in a sealed plastic bag.
Irish-based entrepreneur Jaroslav Mlaka, supplies the Wet Umbrella Guard technology to public buildings such as banks, shopping malls and hotels in London and Dublin, but has never previously installed a machine in Scotland.
He added: “I’m told the weather is pretty wet in Scotland, so we are delighted to have this chance to have the Wet Umbrella Guard in a major bus station, as it is the ideal place.”
Scots are familiar with the sight of umbrella users vigorously shaking off their brollies when they come indoors during wet weather, but that won’t prevent them from dripping.
However, the machines seal wet brollies in a plastic cover, reducing floor drips and protecting furniture and merchandise. It also means women can safely pop their brollies in their handbags without drenching purses, makeup and other belongings.
Glasgow-based Eagle Couriers collected the equipment from Limerick and delivered it to the Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT), which runs the bus station and Glasgow’s subway.
Eagle’s director Jerry Stewart said: “There are days when we receive unusual orders that get everyone talking – and this was definitely one of those.
“None of my team had ever heard of a brolly wrapping machine, let alone seen one in action and everyone is now thoroughly intrigued and can’t wait to try it out.
“Glasgow being Glasgow, I don’t think we’ll have too long to wait. One thing the city doesn’t lack for is rain, so I suspect this machine could be a big hit with commuters. It sounds like a great idea to prevent slips and it will be interesting to see how the SPT trial goes.”