PennDOT Seeks Local Input on Road Robots; Webinar Scheduled for January 20

The state Department of Transportation has developed draft Policy and Procedures for PDD Operations. PDDs are personal delivery devices, or autonomous robots, that are designed to deliver packages to consumers in Pennsylvania. Act 106 of 2020 authorizes the use of these devices on sidewalks and in pedestrian areas and along the berms of roads posted at 25 miles per hour or less. Townships may only prohibit these devices on local roads and pedestrian areas if they would constitute a hazard. Click here to view the draft rules. PennDOT is working to finalize these rules before the act takes effect on January 29, 2021. 

The rules would require operators to reach out to affected municipalities before an application is even submitted and consult with them in the review process and when materials are developed. PDDs could only operate in an approved area, and operators would need to show whether they would be operating on a sidewalk, shoulder, or berm and if bridges are on the route. Also required would be hours of operation, where the PDD will be stored, how an emergency responder can stop or disable a device, and much more.  

PennDOT is interested in township comments on the draft rules and are requesting input by Friday, January 22, to Interested township officials may participate in a webinar on Wednesday, January 20 from 2 to 3 p.m. to discuss the draft policy, ask questions, and receive feedback. Questions may be submitted in advance to To participate in the webinar, email Holly Fishel at for the meeting link, which will take place on Microsoft Teams. 

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