CCJ Daily Dispatch, Sept. 2: Major fleets partner with self-driving truck developer

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Trucking news and briefs for Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020:

Self-driving truck tech maker partners with Ryder, DHL, NFI
Startup self-driving truck developer Ike announced Tuesday partnerships with logistics companies Ryder, DHL and NFI, which will be among the first fleets to deploy trucks powered by Ike’s Level 4 autonomous technology.

These three fleets, along with others yet to be announced, have reserved the first 1,000 Class 8 trucks powered by Ike’s technology.

Ike’s goal is for automated trucks to drive on the highway and hand off loads to truckers in manually-driven trucks for getting to and from the interstate.

Ike’s fleet customers will buy vehicles from OEM truck manufacturers with its system of hardware and software already installed, then pay an annual subscription fee for Ike’s service.

“We are focused on building technology that will help make trucking safer and more productive,” said Alden Woodrow, CEO and co-founder of Ike. “We want to put all our effort behind systems engineering, computer vision and validation. Working with these sophisticated fleet partners allows us to plug Ike’s automation solution into huge existing logistics networks that already know how to move goods efficiently. Our skill sets are complementary, and we think we can make the most progress by working together.”

New Jersey-based moving company owner sentenced in fraud scheme
Rami Zubidat, the owner of several New Jersey-based moving companies, was sentenced in August to 33 months in prison, three years of supervised release and a $100 special assessment after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

According to the DOT Office of Inspector General, Zubidat and his co-conspirators controlled several moving companies that, although being established as separate legal entities, shared bank accounts, post office boxes, employees and an office space.

OIG says customers were quoted “low ball” price estimates for moving household goods, then when the goods were loaded onto trucks, the prices were raised. Between 2013 and 2015, the companies handled hundreds of moves, increasing their final prices above the amount allowed by federal regulations, OIG adds.