Freight ‘drop zones’ for truckers becoming a reality thanks to Cali startup

The company is looking to waste less of driver's time.

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A San Francisco startup is developing a business that it believes will keep truckers from being held up at receiver yards. 

The company, called Baton, recently raised $10.5M to develop a network of ‘drop zones’ just outside of busy city centers that would allow drivers to leave their loaded trailers in the yard and keep moving. Local fleets of trucks would then head to the ‘drop zone,’ collect the freight, and haul it to its final destination. 

In addition to developing this network of 24 hour drop zones in lots sub-leased from partners, Baton is already developing software that coordinates OTR trucks, drop zones, warehouses, and local drivers through one interface, reported Tech Crunch.

There are already several drop zones in Los Angeles, and the company plans to open more throughout the city, as well as locations in Atlanta, Chicago, and Dallas within the next year and a half. Company founders say that this streamlining of the unloading process could help reduce time wasted, carbon emissions, and even increase driver wages. 

“In long-haul trucking, there’s a remarkable amount of wasted time,” co-founder Andrew Berberick said in a recent interview. 

In addition to helping human drivers, the company hopes that these ‘drop zones’ will become “core infrastructure” as autonomous semi trucks become more and more of a reality.