USPS begins testing self-driving mail delivery

USPS begins testing self-driving mail delivery
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The U.S. Postal Service on Tuesday began a two-week trial of self-driving mail delivery trucks in three Southwestern states, Reuters reported.

San Diego-based startup TuSimple is reportedly providing the self-driving trucks which will begin hauling mail between USPS facilities in Phoenix and Dallas.

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The trial program involves five round trips, each totaling more than 2,100 miles of driving.

“The work with TuSimple is our first initiative in autonomous long-haul transportation,” USPS spokeswoman Kim Frum told Reuters.

“We are conducting research and testing as part of our efforts to operate a future class of vehicles which will incorporate new technology.”

The program will be a key test for driverless car technology that could radically change the shipping business, which is facing a growing shortage of drivers.

“This run is really in the sweet spot of how we believe autonomous trucks will be used,” TuSimple Chief Product Officer Chuck Price told Reuters. “These long runs are beyond the range of a single human driver, which means today if they do this run they have to figure out how to cover it with multiple drivers in the vehicle.”