Today’s Pickup: Nuro the first to test autonomous delivery on public streets

Nuro waiver

Good day,

Self-driving vehicle startup Nuro has won approval from federal regulators to test its battery-powered driverless delivery vehicles on public streets. According to a news release, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration granted the Mountain View, California, company a waiver to deploy its low-speed R2s, which lack windshields and side mirrors and aren’t designed to carry human occupants, after a three-year process. Up to 5,000 of the vehicles will be added to its test fleet of modified Toyota Priuses operating in Houston.

Did you know?

A survey conducted by Convey, a last-mile delivery IT provider, found that 24% of respondents had negative views of Amazon’s impact on the retail industry, while 27% felt “very or somewhat” negative about the company’s effect on the environment. However, 21% of respondents who worried about Amazon’s impact on the retail sector still bought half of their goods on its site. About 24% who thought Amazon’s behavior was damaging to the environment still bought half their stuff there.

Via FreightWaves


“Giga Texas?”

“Hell yeah” and “Nope.”

— Elon Musk, on asking his 31 million Twitter followers if Tesla should build its third American gigafactory in Texas

In other news

OneCharge and ECOTEC approved as vendors for California EV charging program

OneCharge, a provider of lithium motive batteries for the material-handling industry, and Ecotec, a provider of energy-efficient battery-charging solutions, have announced that their Southern California customers are eligible for Southern California Edison’s Charge Ready Transport program. The program covers most or all of the customers’ costs for electric infrastructure needed up to the charging station. (MHW.mag)

OOIDA chief delivers an earful of criticism at Senate hearing

“Washington has allowed trucking policy to be overly influenced by executives looking to maximize profits, activists who’d like to regulate truckers to oblivion, and state and local governments who view truckers as a rolling piggybank,” testified Owner Operator Independent Driver Association Executive Vice President Lewie Pugh during a Senate subcommittee hearing. (Landline)

Inside the Uber and Lyft response to the coronavirus

The novel virus is breeding a new kind of chaos in the rideshare industry. (TheDailyBeast)

Amazon will grow to 15,000 employees in Seattle suburb of Bellevue

It is the latest indication of where the company will put its people following an aborted effort to build a corporate campus in New York. (Bloomberg)

Final thoughts

The Port of Los Angeles moved 806,144 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) in January, a 5.4% decrease from the same time last year.

“We anticipated that tariffs would continue to impact cargo volumes as we moved into 2020, and our January volumes reflect that ongoing trend,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka, in a statement. “The coronavirus, which prompted China’s Central Government to extend the Lunar New Year holiday, adds a new layer of uncertainty to global trade.”

Hammer down, everyone!