One of the biggest issues with adding self driving to a truck’s cab is the inclusion of the sensors. A combination of cameras and radars would have to be introduced. When placed at the height of the top of a transport truck cab, these cameras can be easily blinded by the sun.
Small read errors with the cameras could lead to issues between cars, large signs and other challenges for transport trucks in the city where there are tight turns and a consistent need to stop.
Still a long way to come:
Truck drivers are certainly not out of a job anytime soon. Until soft driving technology starts to gain more reliability, and as automated trucks begin to be utilized more often, there will still be a need for drivers inside each one of those trucks.
Most automated trucks today are considered semi-autonomous and any company will need to utilize drivers in order to test their trucks or keep them on the road. Drivers need to be in the cabs at all times as there are still a number of potentially fatal things that could go wrong with a truck when it’s given complete control with a computer.
The nature of the job description in trucking is something that’s going to evolve. As drivers one has to take on as much manual driving, the job can be similar to that of an airline pilot. The truck will be able to drive on its own, but the driver will be there to help us all feel safe and to take over manually if there’s ever a malfunction.
Even though we may be seeing many more self driving trucks on the road in the future, the job of a trucker isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.