San Francisco Cracks Down on Delivery Robots

From PC Mag: Companies looking to test package or food delivery robots on San Francisco sidewalks will have a more difficult time in the future.

According to a report from the San Francisco Chronicle, the city's Board of Supervisors this week unanimously passed tough new regulations that "limit companies to three robots each; limit the city to nine robots total; and confine robots to industrial areas where almost no one lives." On top of that, robots being tested on city sidewalks can go no faster than 3 mph, and a human must be present to monitor the machine.

San Francisco Supervisor Norman Yee and supporters originally wanted to ban robots — like the ones from Yelp partner Marble — from the city's sidewalks altogether, as is the case with Segways and bicycles, according to the Chronicle. Yee and pedestrian advocacy groups reportedly "said they want to prevent sidewalk crowding and protect seniors, children and disabled people."

But the Chronicle noted that the regulations may also be fueled by concern over automation stealing jobs away from humans.

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