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June 19, 2014 10:20 AM, EDT
Netherlands Prepares for Self-Driving Trucks Within Five Years
Volve SATRE Project

The Netherlands is reviewing traffic laws to make large-scale testing of self-driving trucks on public roads possible, Reuters reported.

Goods from Europe’s largest port, in Rotterdam, could begin to be delivered to other cities in the Netherlands within five years as part of a plan by a group of technology and logistics firms.

Testing would begin on computer simulations and then trucks would be tested on a closed track before driving on public roads, Reuters reported.

The road trial would involve two trucks connected wirelessly in what is known as a “platoon,” similar to tests recently done in Nevada. Trucks driving in a platoon formation reduce aerodynamic drag, lowering fuel consumption.

“We really want to seek international partners to see what we can do in this field,” said Marianne Wuite, spokeswoman for the Netherlands Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment.

The group pushing the plan is made up of DAF Trucks, Rotterdam Port, Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research, and Transport and Logistics Netherlands.

“We want to do the first demonstration in the beginning of next year and roll out the trial in a controlled environment as soon as possible,” spokesman Bastiaan Krosse told Reuters.