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Are Self-Driving Vans on their Way to Wales?


This article has been submitted by Pronto

From Volvo promising an all-electric fleet by 2020, to Uber claiming autonomous driving could reach us as early as next year, the worlds of technology and travel have well and truly collided. But; just how seriously should we be taking these claims?

Well, according to many; pretty seriously. Just this month, Waymo, which is owned by Google’s parent company, Alphabet, claimed to be ‘very close’ to launching the first autonomous van. Testing the technology with a modified Chrysler Pacifica minivan, the company will be the first to test vehicles driving themselves without human backups on public roads; suggesting to be further along tha competitors; Delphi, General Motors, Intel, Uber, Apple and Lyft .

“We want the experience of travelling with Waymo to be routine, so you want to use our driver for your everyday needs,”

Waymo CEO John Krafcik.

Confident in the van’s ability,he says:

“Our system runs thousands of checks on itself every second,” he said. “With these checks, our systems can instantly diagnose any problems and pull over or come to a safe stop if needed.”

The company also claims it has redundant braking, steering, power and computing systems, promising to never have to rely on a human being when getting from A to B.

Now a global subject of fascination, many are eager to welcome robot cars in a bid to make roads a safer place to be, aftercall; technology can’t get drowsy, distracted or drunk. As a key point in Phillip Hammond’s 2017 Budget, the UK are making movements toward a driverless car community.

His objective was to have “fully driverless cars” without a safety attendant on board in use by 2021.

He said:

“Some would say that’s a bold move, but we have to embrace these technologies if we want the UK to lead the next industrial revolution,”

Driverless technology in Wales

Though the news is filled with American and German companies dominating this field, Wales is actually playing a key role in cracking the code to autonomous driving. From Glyndwr University’s engineering department to Welsh start-ups such as Riversimple doing their bit; we are certainly making waves in the forever-in-development space of self-driving vehicles.

Whilst you wait for flying vans that can take you to work, cook your dinner and tell you how pretty you look, we will just have to make do with the good old-fashioned manual or automatic options.

Looking for to upgrade your van? If so, be sure to contact us at Pronto Hire today.