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What Does the Tesla-Solarcity Merger Mean for Trucking?

What Does the Tesla-Solarcity Merger Mean for Trucking?

When it comes to historic mergers than influence truck driving, 2016 has been a noteworthy year. Not only did the recent collaboration between Uber and Otto recently lead to the world’s first delivery via a self-driving vehicle, but other popular tech names are transitioning into the transportation industry as well.

Of course not every type of change in the industry of transportation directly affects truckers. For example, Tesla’s electric cars may have a small impact on the way that truck drivers can do their job. But with Elon Musk of Tesla reaching a deal to merge with Solarcity, a company that creates solar panels, many people are wondering if transportation is about to change in a big way.

In most respects, truckers are largely unconcerned about being phased out by autonomous vehicles. Even with a questionable performance in 2016, trucking has a bright future to look forward to over the next decade according to a recent ATA report. Even if solar-power does become common in vehicles, commercial trucks have reduced emissions substantially over the past year.

It should also be noted that the driverless trucking market isn’t without its problems. Numerous accidents have already been reported, causing many to question whether driverless technology is safe enough to be used at all.

The main appeal of driverless vehicles in the commercial market has always been that they can help move more freight when hiring and retention are slacking in the trucking industry. While many drivers have voiced that stifling regulatory mandates are the cause to blame for trucking’s performance in 2016, driverless vehicles will also be affected by similar mandates soon.

Driverless trucks may face speed caps or may need to be modified in accordance with current infrastructure. This means that tech-transport mergers may affect the infrastructures and rules drivers currently operate under. But so long as truckers maintain a voice in the making of laws governing transportation and infrastructure, mergers like these should pose no immediate threats.

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