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The Port Authority is testing autonomous street sweepers and more

On Behalf of | Oct 11, 2023 | Car accidents

A lot of drivers aren’t happy about the thought of sharing the roads with autonomous (self-driving) vehicles. We’ve all seen media coverage of fatal crashes that occurred when a vehicle didn’t detect something ahead.

Currently, there are few autonomous cars and trucks on the road. However, those of us in New York may have other types of autonomous vehicles to worry about. 

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has announced that it’s piloting a driverless street cleaner that’s been compared to a Roomba. The machine is considerably more efficient than street sweepers operated by people – although it does require someone to operate it from a distance. It’s also being used in the parking lots and warehouses in both ports. While it has its limitations, like not being able to operate in low light, it can pick up heavy material like stone and gravel.

One employee with the Port Authority says, “What surprised me was the safety factors. I walked near it, in front of it; I drove my vehicle in front of it. I was really impressed by how quickly it stops.”

An official with the Port Authority says it’s looking towards using the same technology to clean tunnels, bridges, airports and more. He says, “We are actively looking at robotic maintenance opportunities….”

Autonomous vehicles at Kennedy Airport

The second phase of the pilot will involve using autonomous vehicles at Kennedy Airport to transport passengers from the airport parking lots to their terminal as an alternative to the AirTrain.

There’s no doubt that AI and robotics can be used to bring efficiency and productivity to all kinds of work. However, autonomous vehicles and machinery are far from error-proof. 

Those who suffer injuries as the result of an autonomous vehicle malfunctioning can find it challenging to seek compensation for medical costs and other expenses and damages because parties may fight among themselves over who has liability. Having experienced legal guidance can help you protect your right to compensation.