Today’s Pickup: Volvo tests self-driving garbage truck

Volvo garbage truck

Good morning.

While much of the nation is beginning to feel the first effects of summer with temperatures soaring to record highs in many areas, maybe it’s time to talk trash. Volvo Group is testing a self-driving refuse truck. The truck allows a driver to walk behind the vehicle collecting refuse container. Using sensors and radar, the truck autonomously moves to the next location. Volvo envisions the vehicle being used in areas of high density. You can read more about it on Waste360.

Did you know?

According to Satish Jindel, president of SJ Consulting Group, 23% of all for-hire freight tonnage can be attributed to retail accounts. The Commerce Department said sales at non-store retailers (online) represented 10.8% of total U.S. food and retail sales in April. Read How retail trends are reshaping freight movement for more great retail freight nuggets.

Quotable:

“People precipitate economics. It’s not the other way around. Let your shipping and logistics business decisions be a product of understanding people.”

- Ken Gronbach, demographer and futurist

In other news:

Court opens door to more sleep apnea testing

A Supreme Court decision not to hear a sleep apnea testing case may open the door for more carriers to require their drivers to seek testing for the condition, according to several experts. (Trucks.com)

Industry rising

Industrial output rose in April, posting its largest gain in three years, according to data from the Federal Reserve. That is good news for carriers, who are hauling all these goods. (Wall Street Journal)

Finding drivers by studying demographics

Demographer and futurist Ken Gronbach recently told an audience attending the Transplace Shipper Symposium that trucking needs to recruit and hire more minorities, a largely untapped potential driver pool he said. (Transport Topics)

Things are looking up

FTR and ACT Research have both reported positive trends recently, buoying the thoughts of industry professionals for more growth ahead in the near term. (Trucks.com)

Small business supports more trade

A new FedEx survey of small businesses found that the majority are in favor of increasing trade opportunities, with 84% saying that increasing trade is a good thing for the economy. (Heavy Duty Trucking)

In keeping with the spirit of Ken Gronbach’s words, it’s people that make business.

Hammer down!