Self-Driving Trucks May Replace Delivery Drivers After Incredible Cross Country Shipment Time

by : Niamh Shackleton on : 02 Jun 2021 18:02
Self-Driving Trucks May Replace Human Delivery Drivers After Incredible Cross Country Shipment TimePA Images/TuSimple

Human truck drivers may become a thing of the past, as self-driving trucks appear to operate quicker than their person-controlled counterparts.

The revelation comes after a driverless truck completed a cross country shipment much quicker than a human driver could have – arriving at its destination ten hours quicker.


The vehicle started its journey in Nogales, carrying a shipment of watermelons from Arizona’s southern point on the border with Mexico and ending 950 miles away, in Dallas.

Self-driving truck (TuSimple)TuSimple

The self-driving truck was autonomous for a large majority of the journey, but had a human driver for the first 60 miles, Insidermag reports.

According to the publication, the 950-mile route is reasonably straightforward. With this in mind, the autonomous truck completed the trip in 14 hours and 6 minutes, while estimates suggest a truck driven by a human would take exactly 10 hours longer – 24 hours and 6 minutes. The fast journey also meant the watermelons were almost a day fresher.


Unavoidably, self-driving trucks don’t face the same limitations regular ones do, as truck drivers can legally only be driving for a maximum of 11 hours at a time. They also need to have been off duty for at least 10 hours before getting behind the wheel.

Self-driving truck (TuSimple)TuSimple

The experiment was conducted by TuSimple, which specialises in self-driving technologies. The company prides itself on having developed ‘the world’s most advanced self-driving technologies specifically designed to meet the unique demands of heavy-duty trucks’.

Jim Mullen, the company’s chief administrative officer, believes TuSimple’s self-driving trucks could hugely benefit the food industry in particular. He said, ‘Given the fact that autonomous trucks can operate nearly continuously without taking a break means fresh produce can be moved from origin to destination faster, resulting in fresher food and less waste.’


Featured Image Credit: PA Images/TuSimple

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Niamh Shackleton

Niamh Shackleton is a pint sized person and journalist at UNILAD. After studying Multimedia Journalism at the University of Salford, she did a year at Caters News Agency as a features writer in Birmingham before deciding that Manchester is (arguably) one of the best places in the world, and therefore moved back up north. She's also UNILAD's unofficial crazy animal lady.

Topics: Technology, Now


  1. Insidermag

    A Self-Driving Truck Got A Shipment Cross-Country 10 Hours Faster Than A Human Driver