Autonomous technologies are advancing rapidly, and traditional equipment manufacturers as well as new players entering the market are working to bring new capabilities to equipment that could improve safety and productivity. Most of the major Class 8 manufacturers, including Paccar, Daimler and Volvo, as well as newer companies, such as Waymo and Otto, are testing autonomous technology that could be used to create self-driving vehicles.
“This technology is moving much faster than any of us anticipated. There is no doubt,” said Bob Costello, chief economist at American Trucking Associations and a keynote speaker at The NATSO Show 2017.
(Want more on this topic? NATSO has planned a keynote on the future of autonomous and
electrical trucks during NATSO Connect. NATSO Connect 2018 will be held February 10-13 in Nashville, Tennessee. American Trucking Associations’ Chairman and President of TCW Inc. Dave Manning, NATSO CEO and President Lisa Mullings and Dean Newell, VP, Safety and Training, Maverick Transportation, LLC will discuss how quickly these trucks will arrive and the possible impacts on the trucking and truckstop industries. For more information on the conference and the keynote, visit www.natsoconnect.com or contact Amy Toner at (703) 739-8570.)
What About the Driver?
The American Transportation Research Institute has identified significant safety and productivity benefits that may result from autonomous technology adoption, but those within the industry said it is likely that drivers will remain a critical link in the supply chain for quite some time. Drivers play a critical role for carriers, such as interacting with customers on both pick-ups and deliveries. Plus, for safety reasons the public may insist that automated vehicles may have a driver present to take over in any unexpected or difficult situations...