California lawmakers want to ban fully autonomous trucking

California regulators are weighing whether to rescind a ban on autonomous heavy trucks from public roads, but labor groups and supporters in the state legislature are opposed.

The California Federation of Labor and several teamster locals met in Sacramento Monday to ensure a trained safety driver is in the driver’s seat while testing or operating a self-driving vehicle weighing over 10,000 pounds. submitted a bill requiring

California legislators Cecilia Agia-Curry, Democrats Winters, Ash Carla, Democrats San Jose, Tom Lucky, Republicans, and Palmdale introduced the bill. Drivers and lawmakers cited safety as a concern for keeping employed people driving.

The bill will act as a backstop if the California Department of Motor Vehicles moves to allow autonomous trucks on the road, said Jason Rabinowitz, president of Teamsters Joint Council 7. car news.

“If we’re going to deploy this technology, it should be done by Congress, not by regulators,” Rabinowitz said. “We need to think very hard about it. Protecting our economy should be the primary concern, not the interests of the companies pushing this technology and trying to move us too fast.”

Teamsters Local 315 member Joe Garner said he was worried about losing his job because of the machines.

“We can’t overlook the potential for fewer good jobs and how these jobs support the lives of so many families in California,” Garner said. “This is more than just a job for me. It’s a way to support my family.”

Karla said he attended the rally to protect truck driver jobs.

“If the truck breaks down on the side of the road, I want one of you there to troubleshoot. I want one of you there to make sure the truck leaves the road safely. said Kayla.

Companies are already testing self-driving cars in other states, especially in the Southwest, where weather and road conditions favor self-driving cars.

Ariel Wolf, general counsel for the Autonomous Vehicle Industry Association, said last week at the California Department of Motor Vehicles workshop on regulations:

The backlash against fully robotic trucks on public roads also comes as self-driving trucks are seen as the first significant commercialization of self-driving technology in the United States.

Truck builders such as Daimler Trucks Group and Volvo Trucks, along with self-driving technology companies such as Waymo and Aurora Innovations, are pushing freight forward with self-driving technology.

Many early test and pilot programs involve hauling goods over long routes in Texas. Currently, all trucks are operated by safety drivers. However, companies participating in the pilot program have indicated their intentions to eventually pull Safetyher driver out of the driver’s seat, perhaps next year or he in 2025.

The freight and logistics industry aims to build a business based on hub-to-hub freight operations. In this model, a human driver hauls the package to an adjacent highway hub. A large autonomous rig will take over and bring the cargo to a similar hub hundreds of miles away, where another human will carry the cargo to its destination.

Daimler, Volvo and other truck manufacturers are designing special chassis with redundancy to provide a backup system for their autonomous driving technology.

Aguiar-Curry said rapidly converting fleets to self-driving trucks is short-sighted and could lead to worker shortages.

“The supply chain crisis of the past three years should teach us that we must not ignore emerging needs in this highly complex international commodity system,” said Aguiar-Curry.

But Jeff Farrar, executive director of the Self-Driving Vehicle Industry Association, said in a statement after the state’s workshop that California’s DMV will begin rule-making for self-driving trucking and prepare workers for the shift. said it was “essential”.

“With years of gradual deployments to fill current and future labor shortages, it will take time before the full potential of AV trucks is realized in Golden State. It’s important to remember,” said Farrar.

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