Teamsters Drivers rallied in Arcadia Monday, sending a message to Governor Gavin Newsom on the issue of AI-driven big rigs, and they aren't mincing words.
The Teamsters are not at all convinced of the safety of Artificial Intelligence, and they are pushing for Governor Newsom to sign a bill passed overwhelmingly by the legislature that would require a trained human operator to be in any autonomous vehicle weighing over 10,000 lbs.
Jared Hamil, a Teamsters worker advocate, told the crowd at the Monday rally that AI is not ready for real-world use, citing cases in San Francisco.
"They're blocking emergency vehicles from doing their job, they're causing traffic jams, they've even run over dogs. So, autonomous vehicles are already a nightmare; imagine if they were tractor-trailers," Hamil said.
Assemblyman Tom Lackey, a former Highway Patrol Officer, supports the bill, telling KNX News reporter Pete Demetriou there is a way to embrace the change, but as things stand, the liability factor is too high.
"When it's not 100% accurate, there are going to be very big tragedies that occur, and we know what happens when big tragedies occur - there are lawsuits, and those lawsuits are very expensive, and the consumer is going to end up carrying that burden," said the assemblyman.
As for Teamsters local boss, Lindsay Dougherty, she had some big words for the Governor.
"We will reach into his closet and take every f***ing skeleton out that's in there, and we will haunt him for the rest of his life to make certain that he never runs for political office ever f***ing again," Dougherty
She finished it off by saying, "Do the right thing, Gavin, sign the f***ing bill. And if you want to f*** around, you are going to find out."
A 12 truck convoy is headed to Sacramento, and they will be circling the Capitol on Tuesday in a visible sign of pressure on the Governor to do as they would call it, "the right thing."
If not, they say he should expect a lack of labor support in any future races the Governor considers entering.