Self-Driving Tractor Trailers Could Be The Future

The Future Lies in Self-Driving Tractor Trailers

( – A tractor-trailer was tested on a three-lane track near the Monongahela River where it was put to the test for self-driving features.

The truck took curves and even moved lanes to avoid a trash can that was blocking a lane with ease. The self-driving automatic tractor-trailer is equipped with twenty-five laser, radar, and camera sensors to assist the self-driving features. It’s owned by the Pittsburgh-based Aurora Innovation and is expected to start hauling feight later this year. The company will begin with twenty self-driving trucks that will run along Interstate 45 between Dallas and Houston.

Aurora expects to put thousands of self-driving trucks on the freeways of the United States within the next few years. The main goal of the company and its mission with self-driving tractor-trailers is to speed up the flow of goods by allowing products to move around the clock which will accelerate delivery times.

Having an eighty-thousand-pound vehicle on autopilot next to you on the highway isn’t exactly something that many people would be fond of. In fact, over sixty-five percent of Americans said they would fear riding in a self-driving vehicle.

However, Aurora has been working on their self-driving truck tests for seven years and the experiment will end prompting real service. From there, driverless trucks will carry loads between terminals such as those for Uber Freight, FedEx, Werner, and other partners.

Safety has been a huge concern for many people and critics say that the lack of federal regulation could be a danger to other drivers on the road. In response, Aurora said that their testing will prove that self-driving cars are more safe than human-driven ones. They stated that the radars give a much broader range than a human would be able to see and that there would be no issue with drivers getting distracted, being impaired, or falling asleep while driving.

“We want to be out there with thousands or tens of thousands of trucks on the road,” said Chris Urmson, Aurora’s CEO. “And to do that, we have to be safe. It’s the only way that the public will accept it. Frankly, it’s the only way our customers will accept it.”

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