Human drivers are always complaining about workload and are eventually unhappy on Monday just like every working human. In the office jobs, you can chill and may skip your work but what if you are a driver and a surveillance system is continuously pointing the camera towards you to monitor your performance?
Founder of Truckers United for Freedom says “You feel like you’re being watched all the time”. The purpose of this system is to provide equal rights to every trucker. Some people are always acting like they don’t care about their job and stick their finger in their nose just to do blunders.
Devices are introduced in these aspects which are meant to trace trucker’s jobs. Monitoring of current location, the way they are going, their driving speed and their break time everything is recorded and up-to-date. In case of an accident, for the sake of insurance, trucks are provided with trained cameras, various radar devices, ultrasound sensors, accelerometer, lidar, and gyroscope. Just like autonomous vehicles have on-board computers to record data, these trucks also have a computer to feed data in it. Technology is bringing revolutions everywhere- the steering wheel is invented with internal heart monitors that analyze fatigue of the driver.
In the business of retail export/import, trucking plays a very important role. It is purely based upon timing; trucker has to supply products at a given time at a given location. The minimal delay in delivery can cause huge losses to retailers. Trucking is evolving and introducing managements through algorithms which is quite new for platforms like Uber.
The previous history of failed trucking shows that truckers were able to change their logs very easily i.e. they can mention that they forgot to mention their off timings or other blunders like that. But AI invented surveillance systems which cannot be deceived by humans. These ELDs are saving data in the on-board computer and a firm can track trucker’s activities 24/7 and enforce its requirements “hours of service” upon the driver. ELDs are serving organizations for monitoring purposes but they are vulnerable to hacking at the same time.
No doubt trucking is a very tough job and trucker’s monitoring and fatigue analysis is important to avoid road accidents and loses. Research has shown that ELD’s are assumed to improve trucker’s performance by imposing an hour of service rule, but there is no improvement in road accidents. A survey is conducted in which truckers have claimed that ELD’s are causing work pressure on them and they are not able to relax during their break time.
In the upcoming years, cybersecurity risks are a constant source of worry for companies planning to have self-driving trucks. Trucks with ELD installed; are already vulnerable to hacking. Many truckers are unhappy with ELD’s but this automation is mandatory. These devices help drivers to navigate, avoid accidents and to communicate with other devices.
According to the author of a famous book Semi Queer: Inside the World of Gay, Trans, and Black Truck Drivers:
“Each trucker’s job is to figure out how to work around a complex web of regulations, insurance requirements, and technological oversight, where they’re always paying attention to where they’re going to be able to park and how they’re going to get the freight and reset the clock, it’s an endless game of trying to get their job done.”
It is expected that autonomous trucks will be on the road in the near future prior to autonomous cars. Since truckers are emerging among labor crises on a larger scale. According to Balay, “Surveillance technology that’s intrusive is first directed at populations who can’t resist it, it means this technology is meant for people who will be cut off on a prior basis.”
Although truckers are not so happy with cameras inserted on their heads 24/7. This surveillance has to stay there to get their work done with honesty and efficiency. Their low morale and poor working abilities can affect trucking organization badly. As stated by the president of NWI (National Work rights Institute) “Lewis Maltby”
“Unfortunately, drivers don’t have legal rights to privacy, but they ought to have some, what do you find out with a camera that you can’t find with something much less intrusive?”
Last but not least, truckers can never be able to deceive smart AI ELD’s and they have to operate as they are instructed to. So we can assume “Robot truckers” are here as unfolding on another aspect of AI and it will eventually replace human surveillance.