Driverless trucks are wiping out jobs
Originally published: The Peoples Voice (February 8, 2018) |
Driverless trucks are on the way sooner than most workers realize, as corporations seek to raise profits by cutting labour costs. Media reports indicate that investors and researchers agree that tech change in the trucking industry will soon replace 1.7 million jobs in the U.S., where trucking was the most common job in 28 states in 2014. Some predict that pay rates for the remaining human drivers will fall rapidly from the current average annual of $42,500. The jobs of another 1.7 million taxi, bus and delivery vehicle drivers are also at stake.
In April 2016, Uber acquired “Otto”, a kit to turn any big rig into a self-driving truck. The Otto technology enables trucks to navigate highways, stay in a lane, and respond to traffic conditions without human intervention. Otto’s equipment currently costs about $30,000, far less than the annual pay for a driver, and that number will drop in the coming years.