6/24/2014

Netherlands Aims for Self-Driving Delivery Trucks by 2019

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The Netherlands intends to launch a fleet of self-driving commercial delivery trucks within five years.

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The Netherlands intends to launch a fleet of self-driving commercial delivery trucks within five years.

Infrastructure and Environment Minister Melanie Schultz van Haegen outlined the plan to Netherland's Parliament earlier this month. The first step will be to remove legal roadblocks to large-scale tests of driverless vehicles on public roads. She plans to introduce a bill next year to do so.

The initiative will be led by a consortium consisting of DAF trucks, Rotterdam Port, the Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research and the industry group Transport and Logistics Netherlands. The team also is looking for foreign partners.

The Dutch consortium expects to begin with computer simulations and aims to move to demonstrations on a test track early next year. Road trials on public thoroughfares would follow.

Developers expect the system to be used primarily to distribute goods from Rotterdam, Europe's largest sea port, to other cities in the Netherlands.