Pilot, Flying J Travel Centers are planning self-driving trucks

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Pilot Co. and Kodiak Robotics team up to bring self-driving truck services to Pilot and Flying J. Travel Centers (Courtesy Photo)

National travel center operator Pilot Co. has partnered with self-driving trucking company Kodiak Robotics Inc. to develop self-driving truck services at Pilot and Flying J Travel Centers.

According to a statement, the companies are developing a truck port in the Atlanta area for on-road autonomous platforms. Among other things, it will provide accommodations for the pick-up and drop-off of self-driving truck loads; areas for vehicle inspection and maintenance; capacity to refuel trucks; and capabilities to transfer mapping and other data for processing.

Earlier this year, Kodiak announced a new self-driving truck route between Dallas and Oklahoma City with CEVA Logistics. It also established connections between Dallas and Atlanta with US Xpress. The company has been delivering cargo commercially since 2019 and currently has six routes that run regularly between Dallas and Houston, Austin, San Antonio, Atlanta, Oklahoma City and Jacksonville, Florida.

Combining Pilot Co.’s nationwide network of travel and service centers with Kodiak’s technology could play a crucial role in rolling out self-driving trucks nationwide, said Pilot Co. Vice President John Tuly.

“In making this strategic investment, we understand that our customers need real solutions that help meet the growing demand for freight transportation and Kodiak is a strong leader in the autonomous trucking space,” he said.

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