Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Mild rail freight traffic upswing continues

Written by 
  • Print
  • Email
The Association of American Railroads (AAR) on Feb. 15 reported that total U.S. rail traffic for the week ending Feb. 11, 2017 up 2.6% compared with the same week last year. Total U.S. traffic for the first six weeks of 2017 increased 2% over the prior-year period.

Total carloads for the week ending Feb. 11 were 253,670 carloads, up 3.9% compared with the same week in 2016, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 264,761 containers and trailers, up 1.5% compared to 2016.

Three of the 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase compared with the same week in 2016. They were coal, up 18.7% to 89,318 carloads; nonmetallic minerals, up 4.2% to 30,850 carloads; and metallic ores and metals, up 0.8% to 19,348 carloads. Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2016 included petroleum and petroleum products, down 13.6% to 9,763 carloads; grain, down 8.5% to 20,477 carloads; and forest products, down 7% to 9,614 carloads.

For the first 6 weeks of 2017, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 1,520,237 carloads, up 4.5% from the same point last year; and 1,557,309 intermodal units, down 0.4% from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 6 weeks of 2017 was 3,077,546 carloads and intermodal units, an increase of 2% compared to last year.

North American rail volume for the week ending Feb. 11, on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 345,752 carloads, up 4.4% compared with the same week last year, and 337,597 intermodal units, up 1.3% compared with last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 683,349 carloads and intermodal units, up 2.9%. North American rail volume for the first 6 weeks of 2017 was 4,054,988 carloads and intermodal units, up 2.5% compared with 2016.

Canadian railroads reported 76,471 carloads for the week, up 7.6%, and 62,036 intermodal units, up 2.3% compared with the same week in 2016. For the first 6 weeks of 2017, Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 829,412 carloads, containers and trailers, up 6.6%.

Mexican railroads reported 15,611 carloads for the week, down 1.7% compared with the same week last year, and 10,800 intermodal units, down 7.6%. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 6 weeks of 2017 was 148,030 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 8.7% from the same point last year.

Get the latest rail news

Rail news and analysis from Railway Age, IRJ and RT&S by email