An Inch of Snow Proves Too Much for Six-Wheeled Delivery Robots, Amusement Ensues

Several delivery robots got stuck in snow on a sidewalk in Estonia. The devices are six-wheeled delivery robots developed by a start-up company called Starship Technologies. Back when they were first revealed, in 2017, the company planned to test them on sidewalks in Estonia, the UK, and the U.S.
Delivery robots stuck in snow in Estonia 6 photos
Photo: Screenshot from Imgur video by justabutternut
Delivery robots stuck in snow in EstoniaDelivery robots stuck in snow in EstoniaDelivery robots stuck in snow in EstoniaDelivery robots stuck in snow in EstoniaDelivery robots stuck in snow in Estonia
These robots are designed to deliver things on short routes, as they are meant to operate on the sidewalk and at walking speed instead of vehicles meant to operate on the open road. The advantage would be that such robots bear less danger to other vehicles and pedestrians, as they operate at smaller speeds and weigh less than an automobile.

Their creators imagined these autonomous robots to have the size (and cargo capacity) of a shopping basket. The device is meant to carry food, shopping bags, or other small packages from a store or restaurant to a customer that lives relatively nearby.

Instead of using a delivery agent with a vehicle, and generating CO2 emissions from its operation, these robots would operate on the sidewalk in silence and handle what is known as "last-mile delivery."

Before preparing tin foil hats and announcing the imminent uprising of robot overlords, you should know that these devices still need humans to be refilled with packages when they are sent for delivery.

Moreover, they still require maintenance, as well as charging, and those are tasks that only humans are "equipped" to handle. For now, at least.

As a video posted on Imgur has shown, a snow day might delay a delivery significantly, as seven robots were spotted by a user who goes by the name "justabutternut" and posted online. The vehicles seem to have gotten stuck in the snow, and all seven robots were following the same route.

Hopefully, we will see a statement from the Estonian company that will explain what went wrong. If you were to ask us, it would look like a matter of grip. With different wheels, the company might avoid similar situations going forward.

Delivery drone traffic jam in Estonia after an inch of snowfall

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About the author: Sebastian Toma
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Sebastian's love for cars began at a young age. Little did he know that a career would emerge from this passion (and that it would not, sadly, involve being a professional racecar driver). In over fourteen years, he got behind the wheel of several hundred vehicles and in the offices of the most important car publications in his homeland.
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