MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — A.P. Moller-Maersk and autonomous trucking outfitter Kodiak Robotics have launched the first commercial autonomous trucking lane between Houston and Oklahoma City.
According to a news release, the freight lane marks an expansion of the collaboration between Kodiak and Maersk, which began with their first autonomous freight deliveries together in November 2022 as part of Maersk’s Global Innovation Center Program.
Kodiak has been delivering eight loads per week, with a safety driver behind the wheel, for Maersk customers since August, the news release noted.
“Teaming with Kodiak enables Maersk to stay at the forefront of innovative solutions,” said Erez Agmoni, Maersk’s global head of innovation, logistics and services. “Autonomous trucks will play an instrumental role in digitizing the supply chain. We expect self-driving trucks to ultimately become a competitive advantage for Maersk as we execute on our strategy to provide customers with a sustainable, end-to-end logistics solution across air, land and sea.”
Kodiak and Maersk are completing four round trips per week on a 24-hour-a-day, four-day-a-week basis between a Houston facility, where consumer products are loaded onto 53-foot trailers, to a distribution center in Oklahoma City.
Operational learnings gained from the activity are captured and documented as part of the Kodiak Partner Deployment Program, which is designed to help companies learn how Kodiak’s self-driving trucks can become an integral part of their overall logistics strategy and offerings.
“Since our founding, we have focused on developing an autonomous product that is easy for global innovation leaders to integrate into their networks, and Maersk is a perfect fit,” said Don Burnette, founder and CEO of Kodiak. “Hauling commercial freight gives us the opportunity to work together to integrate Kodiak’s autonomous trucking solution into Maersk’s operations. As the first autonomous trucking company to establish this new commercial lane between Houston and Oklahoma City, we are demonstrating our team’s ability to introduce new lanes and bring new efficiencies to the entire logistics industry.”
Born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and raised in East Texas, John Worthen returned to his home state to attend college in 1998 and decided to make his life in The Natural State. Worthen is a 20-year veteran of the journalism industry and has covered just about every topic there is. He has a passion for writing and telling stories. He has worked as a beat reporter and bureau chief for a statewide newspaper and as managing editor of a regional newspaper in Arkansas. Additionally, Worthen has been a prolific freelance journalist for two decades, and has been published in several travel magazines and on travel websites.