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That semi truck next to you on I-45 might be driving itself


A new self-driving truck startup recently announced that they are using the most heavily travelled freight corridor in Texas to deliver goods to customers.

On August 6, Kodiak Robotics announced via blog post that they are using self-driving technology to operate semi trucks on the more than 200 mile stretch of I-45 between Dallas and Houston.

The company also announced that they are operating as a “true freight carrier” and that they are “now hauling freight for commercial clients, using our autonomous technology.” The company has so far declined to name their clients.

For now, Kodiak Robotics says that their self-driving trucks are operating with a “safety driver” at the wheel and they promise that “we will not put a truck on the road without a human behind the wheel until we have proven that our trucks are safer than a human driver. Full stop.”

The safety driver is also responsible for more complicated city driving and navigating shipping facilities.

The company does, however, point out the apparent advantages that their trucks have over human drivers: “Our trucks will not drive drunk, distracted or drowsy. Our trucks will never speed, or text while driving. While humans often repeat their mistakes, software learns from them.”

Kodiak Robotics said that they chose Texas as their main hub of operation because of the “great people, freight-rich economy, reasonable regulatory structure, and robust infrastructure.”

Kodiac Robotics isn’t the only company testing self-driving truck tech in Texas. In May, TuSimple announced they they’d been awarded a short term contract from the USPS to haul mail for five round trips between distribution centers in Phoenix, Arizona and Dallas, Texas using driverless truck technology.


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