Are Driverless Trucks the Future?

driverless trucks

Driverless trucks could make the road safer for everyone.

Self driving vehicles are all the buzz in technology gossip. The idea is simple. Vehicles equipped with sensors and advanced software have the potential to navigate themselves on the highway, freeing up drivers and passengers to do other things—like take a nap! Are driverless trucks really in our future?

Cost Comparison

Although the new technology to enable driverless trucks could be substantial, it pales in comparison to potential savings. A truckload shipped from New York to Los Angeles costs about $4,500, and labor represents about 75 percent of that cost. But there’s more. Regulations (and frankly, human needs) require drivers to drive no more than 11 hours per day without taking an 8 hour break. A driverless truck can drive non stop for nearly 24 hours. Therefore, driverless trucking technology would essentially double the output of the U.S. transportation network.

It’s also important to keep in mind that trucking represents a substantial cost of the consumer goods we buy. The effects of driverless trucking technology could be felt in more ways than one might initially expect.

Driverless Trucks Could Be Safer

Driverless trucking technology could be a significantly safer option than traditional trucking. As many as 3,660 people died as a result of large truck accidents in the year 2014. More truck drivers are killed on the job than any other profession in the U.S. Given that most vehicular accidents are the result of an impaired, distracted, or inexperienced driver it’s easy to envision how a computer could be a safer alternative. Computers are consistent and predictable. They do not get drunk or sleep or send text messages while driving. Autonomous driving technology could be programmed to drive slower and use safer driving techniques.

The Problem of Automated Jobs

Although driverless trucking offers a lot benefits, it does not come without concern. Truck driving is the most common job in 29 states with more than 1.6 million Americans working as truck drivers. The loss of jobs would be a devastating blow to the economy, and many businesses that cater to the needs of truck drivers such as gas stations, hotels and diners would also be affected. So is automated trucking the future of the trucking industry? It’s hard to say, but for now it remains an interesting prospect on the horizon.

For All Your Trucking Needs

Evan Transportation provides trucking and transportation services for clients throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. All of our drivers and staff are offered competitive salaries, benefits, and are guaranteed to be home every day. Interested in finding out more? Visit us online or give us a call at 443-673-3365. For even more information, visit us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+.

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This entry was posted on Friday, June 24th, 2016 at 2:51 pm. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.