Big Rigs Go High-Tech: Texas Highways to Welcome Autonomous Trucks by 2024

11 July 2023

Revolution on the Road

Imagine cruising down the highway and seeing a big rig next to you, but there's no one behind the wheel! This might sound like a scene from a sci-fi movie, but it's about to become reality on Texas highways. Aurora, a Dallas-based autonomous trucking company, is testing self-driving semi-trucks on one of the busiest routes in Texas - the Dallas-Houston route along I-45. Their goal? Full automation by the end of 2024.

Test Drives and Safety Measures

For now, these test drives are manned, with a driver ready to take over in case of an emergency. Alexandra Skores, a business reporter who joined an Aurora team on their Dallas-Houston trip, described the experience as watching "large-scale technology" at work. She noted that the company is constantly looking for ways to improve safety features, with the aim of making the technology "bulletproof".

Autonomous Trucks and Road Safety

But Aurora isn't alone in this race. Several other autonomous vehicle companies are testing their products on Texas roads, all with safety as their top priority. This is particularly important in Texas, a state that ranks high in trucking casualties. The hope is that this technology could help reduce these numbers.

Technology that Understands the Road

Aurora's technology is designed to recognize and react to obstacles on the road, whether it's a pedestrian, another vehicle, or an object. It's all about making the roads safer and giving drivers a sense of reassurance. However, Skores advises a cautious optimism, noting that while her ride was smooth, it was just a short preview of a much longer route.

Looking Ahead

As we look to the future, it's clear that autonomous vehicles are no longer just a concept, but a reality that's just around the corner. And while there's still a lot of testing and refining to be done, companies like Aurora are leading the way in making our roads safer and more efficient.