Robot Transport

So by the 2030’s all minion run production processes, and that also includes the road transport industry will be run by robots or driverless trucks. So I wonder if in the next thirteen years our road infrastructure will improve sufficiently to support driverless vehicles? Furthermore, will pre-launch testing include such things as what a driverless truck would do if a fully laden truck had a front wheel blowout while descending a hill or what it would do in the event of a breakdown while driving on a motorway or in a city, or even what it would do if it’s planned route was impossible due to roadworks?
All are valid questions among countless more including what happens when a sensor fails together with any redundant systems that may be fitted. I’ve been lucky enough to drive a lot of the latest technology fitted to heavy trucks including topographic data input, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, proximity control and collision avoidance systems, and while all these system are brilliant bits of kit for the driver, but they are by no means infallible.
I envisage queues at depots where trucks become confused or stop and I also think that the first family that gets wiped out by a driverless truck will cause a radical disagreement on blame, with the onus being contested by the operator, vehicle manufacturer and the programmers. Who will actually be found guilty and whether they will serve a prison sentence remains to be seen.
In the meantime the transport industry bemoans the fact that no new drivers are coming into the industry, and I wonder why anyone would want to come into a thankless industry when future employment prospects look so bleak.
I am certainly not worried about being replaced by a robot in the next decade, more to the point, I think the road transport industry should be worried about not having a robot ready to drive my truck for when I decide that I have had enough of watching an industry that gave me everything continue on it’s misguided course of self-destruction.
Watch this space for a future post on driverless trucks and the potential implications of their inevitable and possibly sooner than you think appearance.