A self-driving snow plow hit the ground in Grande Prairie, Alta., this week, making the city near the B.C. border the first in Canada to send the new device into action.
Dubbed a “snow-bot”, the RT-1000 was put to work clearing a popular seven-kilometre walking trail around the Bear Creek reservoir.
“The garage door opens, it pulls out about four feet, press the run button and it just goes from there,” city spokesperson Rory Tarant said in an interview with CBC Daybreak North.
Grande Prairie is the first Canadian city to try out the RT-1000, which is manufactured by Colorado-based Left Hand Robotics.
We are excited to welcome to our snow-clearing fleet the RT-1000 by <a href=”https://twitter.com/LeftHandRobotic?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@LeftHandRobotic</a>! <br><br>An automated snow plowing robot that can clear up to 25 km of trails on one tank of fuel. Watch it in action below or learn more here: <a href=”https://t.co/Eg3kifMYyc”>https://t.co/Eg3kifMYyc</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/gpab?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#gpab</a> <a href=”https://t.co/5c2oagLVKX”>pic.twitter.com/5c2oagLVKX</a>
Tarant said in a time of ever-tightening municipal budgets, having a self-driving machine to take on simple tasks frees up city crews to handle more complex problems.
“Obviously, it can’t be as perceptive as [a person], but it does a really good job on the longer, more monotonous trails,” Tarant said.
The machine uses GPS, radar and 360-degree…