TuSimple Holdings Inc announced on Wednesday that its autonomous trucks have driven 550 miles (885 km) on public roads without being manned by human drivers in Arizona.
Additionally, the company announced it would offer fully autonomous freight services in other large shipping areas, including Texas, by the end of year 2023.
The majority of self-driving trucking companies still have safety drivers on board at all times to take over when necessary. As of the end of December, TuSimple has been running driverless trucks along an 80-mile stretch running between Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona.
On Wednesday, the company reported that a total of seven fully autonomous runs have since been completed on that route, adding that no humans intervened in the traffic flow or operated the truck remotely.
It claims to be the world’s first company to operate fully driverless heavy-duty trucks.
Earlier this year, competitor Gatik said it was driving smaller box trucks for grocery giant Walmart over a two-mile stretch in Arkansas without a safety driver.
Safety drivers continue to be employed by self-driving truck companies like Aurora Innovation Inc and Embark Technology Inc on their pilot runs.
From billions of dollars of engineering investment over the past decade, startups and automakers are under pressure to start earning revenue from autonomous vehicles.
In a statement released Wednesday, TuSimple said railroad Union Pacific will become its first customer to move freight between Tucson and Arizona using its fully autonomous trucks.