/ 15 november 2021

Will Truck Drivers Be Working From Home Soon?

Self-driving trucks are coming. This is not a matter of if, but a matter of when. For drivers, this means that their job will change, and maybe even the location from where they do their job. But more about that later. First, let’s dive into the world of self-driving trucks. 

There is self-driving, and there is self-driving 

When you read or hear about self-driving vehicles, there’s often a level mentioned. This level indicates the vehicle’s autonomous and ranges from manually driven (level 0) to fully automated systems (level 6). 

 Level 0: no automation. The vehicle may interfere by braking in case of emergencies, but it has no sustained control. 

  • Level 1: hands-on. The system and the driver share control of the vehicle. Think (adaptive) cruise control, lane assist, parking assistance. 
  • Level 2: hands-off. The system has control of the vehicle, but the driver is on stand-by and intervenes if something is wrong. 
  • Level 3: eyes off. You can watch a movie or do your e-mails, but you have to be available for situations where the system asks you to take control of the vehicle. 
  • Level 4: mind off. The driver can go to sleep and even leave the driver seat. The system is in complete control of the vehicle, but only in certain areas and under particular conditions. 
  • Level 5: steering wheel optional. No human intervention is required at all. 

Einride enables truck drivers to work from home  

Swedish freight technology startup Einride is determined to change transportation as we know it. They see a future filled with autonomous electrical trucks. The Pod, as they have named the autonomous truck they are developing, has been designed as a Level 5 system. There is no cab for a driver on a Pod. It will take years before fully autonomous vehicles are allowed on all roads. To enable Einride to operate Pods on public roads sooner, they have designed a way to operate the pods remotely, similar to how drone pilots can operate drones. 

This has enormous benefits for truck drivers. Maybe working from home is taking it a bit too far, but at least they can go to work in an office environment. More importantly, after a day of “driving,” they can go back home and sleep in their own bed instead of a motel or a bunk in their truck. 

Einride believes drivers can manage several pods when they can operate autonomously, only stepping in when something is wrong and the system needs help. Drivers then become more like air traffic controllers overseeing multiple planes at once. 

Self-driving, but not self-cleaning!  

Self-driving or not, trucks need road services, whether that’s truck cleaning, repair, or secure parking.  Our road services platform enables transport companies to centrally manage services like truck wash, truck repair, and secure parking. Our data-driven approach to road services gives companies the insight they need to save money and increase the efficiency of their operations. And what about receiving one invoice, instead of many invoices and receipts. Contact one of our experts to see how you can save both money and time by managing road services through the TRAVIS platform.

Images courtesy of Einride 

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