“La Dépêche du Midi” was able to test a trip in the EZ10, the autonomous and electric shuttle that rests in the car park at the entrance to the Toulouse Oncopole Cancer Institute.
The silhouette of the autonomous and electric shuttle takes shape slowly. On the 500-meter road that rests the Toulouse Cancer Institute Oncopole in the car park, the EZ10 moves silently at 25 km / h. When stationary, the doors open automatically for 25 seconds. The loudspeakers crackle with instructions as if the shuttle was empty. However, Siméao, the operator, is on board. But it is artificial intelligence that drives. He still ensures the reception of passengers and proper operation using a tablet and a joystick, lack of steering wheel and pedal. In a week, he will leave the interior of the driverless shuttle as part of the new phase of experimentation.
For 5 minutes, the EZ10 follows a virtual line prerecorded in its software. Everything works without a hitch, thanks to the different sensors. No accidents on the clock. “It happens that in the event of rain, the shuttle stops. The sensors are an obstacle. And as soon as there is fog, it is no longer functional,” says Siméao. Five days a week, Monday to Friday, the shuttle welcomes passengers between 7:30 am and 10:30 am then from 3:30 pm to 6:30 pm When it was launched in March, the EZ10 was full. The 6 seats and the 6 standing places were regularly occupied. 5,000 kilometers later, its daily passenger count has declined. It fluctuates between 20 and 60 on great days. Arrived in front of the Oncopole, the shuttle makes a U-turn. A choreography that she performs dozens of times a day before Siméao pampers her and loads her in the evening. The EZ10 is an experiment which aims to develop on a large scale. For the moment, she is following her path, already all mapped out.