The topic of self-driving cars has recently gone very much, and of course, the US is interested in this technology.
Today, we have heard that the United States Postal Service (USPS), an independent agency of the United States Government, responsible for providing postal services to all US citizens, has cooperated with TuSimple, resulting in a two-week test period for delivery of letters using autonomous trucks. If everything goes according to plan, then a startup dealing with self-driving cars can count on a really huge customer.
USPS is the second largest civilian employer in the United States (right after Wal-Mart) and has a fleet of over 212,530 vehicles, which is why it is the world’s largest car fleet operator. The test period begins today, and autonomous cars will run between distribution centers in Phoenix, Arizona and Dallas, where a road stretching for 1,600 kilometers is overcome.
Just like other suppliers of goods, such as UPS or DHL, USPS also looks for a helping hand in the autonomous car industry, which can not only improve the delivery process itself, but also reduce fuel costs or pollution, as well as improve employee safety. It can not be concealed that negotiating such long routes, very often even at night, requires a lot of concentration and experience from drivers.
For TuSimple it is also a very important step, because so-far it tested its autonomous fleet only on short routes in Arizona, and here is the chance for a longer cooperation with a huge company that can be very lucrative for a startup. It is also worth noting that in contrast to the previously mentioned truck tests in Sweden, there will be drivers on board cars who will gather necessary data and ensure safety.
According to Xiaodi Hou, founder of TuSimple: – It is very exciting that before people change into robotic taxis, their packages and letters will be delivered by autonomous vehicles. Test cooperation with the USPS in this particular commercial corridor will help us to check our solutions and indicate the direction of further development on the way to full commercialization.
Autonomous vehicles will be coming to our daily life faster than we expected.