Driving is a billion dollar industry that many humans rely on, but what if that all changed. The trucking Industry is struggling with a severe shortfall of drivers nationwide .Delivery services, cab companies, even ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft are struggling to find the drivers they need to keep their freight and passengers moving reports NBC and the trucking association of America.
With Self driving cars being able to run 24 hours , unlike a Human who needs to sleep, a self driving car will be able to do three times the amount of work as a normal human being and could speed up production. The shortage of drivers is “a huge inducement for the development of autonomous and fully driverless trucks (and other vehicles),” said David Cole, director-emeritus of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan. While “it isn’t going to happen overnight,” robotic vehicles will soon
begin to displace professional drivers in numbers that will be “certainly in the millions.”
The trucking industry is the lifeblood of the U.S. economy. Over 70% of all the freight tonnage moved in the U.S. goes on trucks. Without the industry and our truck drivers, the economy would come to a standstill. To move 10.5 billion tons of freight annually requires over 3.4 million heavy-duty Class 8 trucks and over 3.5 million truck drivers. It also takes over 38 billion gallons of diesel fuel to move all of that freight. Simply – without trucks, America stops.
To handle that load, trucking companies need to recruit about 90,000 new drivers annually, but the trade group predicts the industry will fall 50,000 short of its goal this year, a trend that has been growing worse since the economy began to recover. “Fleets are…suffering from a lack of qualified drivers,” said Bob Costello, the chief economist of the ATA. “It remains a serious concern for our industry, for the supply chain and for the economy at large.”