Video: Rio Tinto shows off driverless trucks

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Video: Rio Tinto shows off driverless trucks
Rio Tinto's driverless trucks operate in an electrical storm (courtesy: Rio Tinto)

'Different, but safe'.

Rio Tinto has provided a rare glimpse of the driverless truck fleet in operation as it gears up to bring the systems to a second production mine site.

The mine giant has released a recruitment video via YouTube that shows the automated trucks in operation.

The firm also attempts to ease concerns that the autonomous program will result in less jobs being available or that it raises safety concerns for those working alongside the equipment.

"It is quite a different arrangement to a conventional mining operation, but very safe," Rio Tinto's general manager of greater Brockman operations, Mark Eaglesham, said.

"There are still operators in the pit working around the autonomous fleet, and in actual fact the number of people we need to run autonomous pit isn't much less than we need in a manned pit.

"Yes, there aren't truck operators, but we still need all the other mine fleet operators. We still need the maintenance activity, and there are a lot of other roles that are generated through the autonomous works."

iTnews revealed last month that Rio Tinto's Nammuldi mine would be next to receive the autonomous trucks.

The vehicles already operate at Rio Tinto's Yandicoogina mine, after being moved out of trial at West Angelas earlier this year.

Rio Tinto plans to bring 150 autonomous trucks to its operations over the next four years.

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