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New technology aims to make trucking safer

Louisiana residents may be familiar with autonomous truck technology. A company called Starsky Robotics is aiming to make it possible to control a truck remotely from an office. The truck is fitted with a kit that allows a person to control the steering, throttle and transmission. The company relies on front and side-facing radar, computer software and cameras to allow the truck to navigate on the highway.

The person who controls the truck from the office makes decisions based on data generated by the truck. The company has stated that its goal is to make truck driving a safer and more appealing profession. If the technology is implemented, it may also give drivers more time to spend at home. Representatives from Starsky Robotics say that they are not anti-truck, and that they are a combination of a trucking company and a technology company.

So far, the remote technology has not yet been tested on an actual highway. However, the company did complete a 140-mile test trip with a driver in the truck. It was able to remain in autonomous mode for 85 percent of the journey. While it plans to continue testing with a driver in the truck, it hopes to have drivers out of the vehicle by the end of 2017.

The technology will most certainly cut down on the volume of accidents that are caused by truck driver fatigue. However, there will still be a human element involved, and thus attorneys representing people who have been injured in a collision with an autonomous truck may still seek to hold the remote drivers and their employers responsible if it can be determined that errors were made.

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The Law Offices of W.A. “Chip” Forstall, Jr.

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