DHL optimistic about automation, but it’s no quick fix for driver shortage

The benefits of self-driving trucks remain largely theoretical; Xavier Boucherat hears from DHL Freight why automation is unlikely to offer any short-term help to fleets struggling with driver shortage

On paper, Germany’s trucking industry is crying out for automation. The country remains one of the most heavily industrialised on the continent, and as such its trucking sector is a vital backbone. Yet driver shortages are chronic, with an estimated vacuum of around 45,000 drivers, and those that remain are nearing retirement. In a 2018 interview for Bayerischer Rundfunk, Sebastian Lechner, board member of the Federal Shipper’s Union, estimated that because of the shortage, some one in five trucks in the country were currently unused….

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