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Washington lawmakers are considering robot delivery rules



by TOM JAMES, Associated Press

The self-governing robots have six wheels, and the Amazon smile emblem is printed side by side. (Photo: Amazon.com)

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) ̵

1; The future, as it turns out, makes a quiet sound.

With a little more fanfare than the soft engine noise, a new type of vehicle rolled on the concrete ramp to the Capitol Capitol Monday in Washington DC: A delivery robot designed to transport packages to the door of consumers among the first of its kind in the state.

Devices are starting a debate to regulate the state's most recent automation limit, even when the online giant Amazon has already begun testing them. The hearing bill on Monday will limit the weight of robots, restrict them to sidewalks and walkways, and require both insurance and active monitoring by a person, completing what the sponsor of the bill calls a gray area in state law. "What would you define as" a motor vehicle, that's a pedestrian? "At the moment, we have no rules to determine the behavior of this," Democratic Representative Shelli Klobova said, pointing to the robot.

However, Amazon is ahead of legislators and has already taken steps to replace robot suppliers in the state. The company announced last Wednesday that it has begun testing autonomous delivery vehicles in Snooshish County, just north of Seattle.

The company publishes on its website that it starts with six of the devices, each with a cooler size of six. wheels and a brilliant blue case. They will be accompanied by an employee on their routes – at least to get started.

Visually, like the Amazon's six-crank cube, the device presented on Monday came from Starship Technologies, a company already working in other countries.

Employees usually monitor several devices at a time, with the possibility of going to any of them if a problem arises, said David Catania, a star ship representative. But, added Catania, the devices usually remain in the autonomous mode "90 Plus" percent of the time.

While the robots can not climb the stairs, Catania adds, they can raise their front wheels to mount curbs, and

Kloba said he is still looking for contributions from disability rights defenders for safe maximum speed of pavements and that its bill will not stop local jurisdictions from imposing their own rights. licensing policies or quotas.


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