I’ve never been a truck driver, but I’d imagine it’s not the easiest job out there. First, they’re always away from their family for long stretches at a time. Then, they’re on the road for hours and hours every single day trying to get to their destination address on time, all the while fighting to stay awake behind the wheel. If that wasn’t enough of a hassle, there are all of the other drivers with whom they have to share the road, some of whom probably aren’t the easiest to drive alongside. We’ve heard a lot of talk regarding autonomous vehicles, but I at least had not heard of a self-driving semi until I read about the one Mercedes is working hard to develop. Their “Future Truck 2025” promises to make truck driving a heck of a lot easier and not to mention safer for everyone on the road.
Truck drivers still have to merge their trucks onto the highway, but once they get up to a speed of 50 MPH, they can choose to activate the “Highway Pilot” mode and the truck will take care of the rest. It will also be able to communicate with other vehicles on the road to see how fast they’re going, etc. And, while in Highway Mode, the truck will know exactly the best route to the destination thanks to a nifty onboard navigational system. Mercedes has always been known for making higher quality vehicles, but they’ll definitely be setting a standard if this self-driving semi turns out to be successful.
This will definitely (in theory) reduce the risk of drivers falling asleep behind the wheel and causing an accident.
What do you think? Would self-driving semis make the roads safer or more dangerous? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!
[Image via TechnologicalUnemployment]