When the topic of discussion turns to fleet vehicle management, someone brings up the prospect of self-driving commercial trucks. I expect you saw that self-driving truck with a load of beer handling a delivery. It was all over the Internet. (I’m not sure that the self-delivery was more important than the fact that it delivered beer in some of those reports.)
If you’ve ever wondered if one of these computerized wonders is going to take your job, then we have good news for you. Most truckers will be long retired before that day ever comes.
Fleet Vehicle Management For the Future?
We don’t think so. Here’s why:
- It’s true that Google has built a car that can drive itself – barely. The tiny thing is able to navigate safe roads in perfect weather at low speeds. But neither Google nor anyone else has developed a software program that can duplicate what transportation professionals like yourself do every moment of every day. Think of the millions of decisions your mind makes every time you go on a run. Your mind controls a massive 18-wheeler rig in all kinds of conditions while being alert to what’s going on around you every moment. Science has yet to invent anything that can handle your job. That’s not going to change for a long time.
- Building a self-driving truck is one thing. Selling the public on buying it (or allowing it) is another. Drivers are pretty finicky about the vehicles they choose to drive especially if they have kids. Safety is a big issue! How many of those folks are going to be okay with a 40-ton truck barreling down the road beside them with no one behind the wheel?
- Autonomous passenger cars could actually make life better for the average trucker—if they ever become commonplace, that is. Consider how many careless or rude motorists you run across during the average workweek. Most of those people shouldn’t have a license; in fact, some of them probably don’t. Unlike them, self-driving cars will never get tired, never have too much to drink, and never whip in and out of lanes like a crazy fool. What kind of vehicle would you rather share the road with: one operated by a computer or one driven by an exhausted motorist with an attitude problem?
Self-Driving Cars Need to Come First
While some car drivers would say that applies to truckers (we would agree) there are far more cars on the road than trucks. The autonomous car is more likely to be developed first so the bugs get worked out.
When you look at all the facts, it’s easy to see why self-driving trucks will not be taking your job away anytime soon. So don’t waste time thinking about it. Instead, focus on more pleasant thoughts, like how TruckingOffice can simplify every aspect of fleet vehicle management for you. Find out for yourself how good our product is by taking it for a free 30-day test drive starting today.