Skip to main content
Tags: California self driving trucks Newsom veto

California Bill to Have Human Drivers Ride in Autonomous Trucks Is Vetoed by Governor

California Bill to Have Human Drivers Ride in Autonomous Trucks Is Vetoed by Governor

Sunday, 24 September 2023 06:42 AM EDT

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has vetoed a bill to require human drivers on board self-driving trucks, a measure that union leaders and truck drivers said would save hundreds of thousands of jobs in the state.

The legislation vetoed Friday night would have banned self-driving trucks weighing more than 10,000 pounds (4,536 kilograms) — ranging from UPS delivery vans to massive big rigs — from operating on public roads unless a human driver is on board.

Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher, head of the California Labor Federation, said driverless trucks are dangerous and called Newsom's veto shocking. She estimates that removing drivers would cost a quarter million jobs in the state.

“We will not sit by as bureaucrats side with tech companies, trading our safety and jobs for increased corporate profits. We will continue to fight to make sure that robots do not replace human drivers and that technology is not used to destroy good jobs,” Fletcher said in a statement late Friday.

In a statement announcing that he would not sign the bill, the Democratic governor said additional regulation of autonomous trucks was unnecessary because existing laws are sufficient.

Newsom pointed to 2012 legislation that allows the state Department of Motor Vehicles to work with the California Highway Patrol, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration “and others with relevant expertise to determine the regulations necessary for the safe operation of autonomous vehicles on public roads.”

Opponents of the bill argued self-driving cars that are already on the roads haven’t caused many serious accidents compared to cars driven by people. Businesses say self-driving trucks would help them transport products more efficiently.

Union leaders and drivers said the bill would have helped address concerns about safety and losing truck driving jobs to automation in the future.

The bill coasted through the Legislature with few lawmakers voting against it. It’s part of ongoing debates about the potential risks of self-driving vehicles and how workforces adapt to a new era as companies deploy technologies to do work traditionally done by humans.

Newsom, who typically enjoys strong support from labor, faced some pressure from within his administration not to sign it. His administration’s Office of Business and Economic Development says it would push companies making self-driving technologies to move out-of-state.

The veto comes as the debate over the future of autonomous vehicles heats up. In San Francisco, two robotaxi companies got approval last month from state regulators to operate in the city at all hours.

Last Tuesday in Sacramento, hundreds of truck drivers, union leaders and other supporters of the bill rallied at the state Capitol. Drivers chanted “sign that bill” as semi-trucks lined a street in front of the Capitol. There are about 200,000 commercial truck drivers in California, according to Teamsters officials.

Also Friday, Newsom vetoed a bill that would have required judges in custody cases to consider whether a parent affirms their child’s gender identity and another measure that would have barred state prison officials from sharing information about incarcerated immigrants with federal officials.

Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


Newsfront
California Gov. Gavin Newsom has vetoed a bill to require human drivers on board self-driving trucks, a measure that union leaders and truck drivers said would save hundreds of thousands of jobs in the state.The legislation vetoed Friday night would have banned self-driving...
California self driving trucks Newsom veto
498
2023-42-24
Sunday, 24 September 2023 06:42 AM
Newsmax Media, Inc.

Sign up for Newsmax’s Daily Newsletter

Receive breaking news and original analysis - sent right to your inbox.

(Optional for Local News)
Privacy: We never share your email address.
Join the Newsmax Community
Read and Post Comments
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
 
TOP

Interest-Based Advertising | Do not sell or share my personal information

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
Download the NewsmaxTV App
Get the NewsmaxTV App for iOS Get the NewsmaxTV App for Android Scan QR code to get the NewsmaxTV App
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved