Thursday, July 31, 2014

Rail freight traffic continues to grow

Written by  William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief
The Association of American Railroads reported continued growth in U.S. rail traffic for the week ending July 26, 2014, with 306,988 total carloads, up 4.3% compared with the same week last year. Total U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 264,809 units, up 3.3% compared with the same week last year. Total combined U.S. weekly rail traffic was 571,797 carloads and intermodal units, up 3.8% compared with the same week last year.

Nine of 10 of the carload commodity groups posted increases compared with the same week in 2013, including motor vehicles and parts with 18,371 carloads, up 20.3%; petroleum and petroleum products with 15,593 carloads, up 19.2%; metallic ores and metals with 29,037 carloads, up 17.2%; and grain with 19,978 carloads, up 16.1%. The commodity that posted a decrease was coal with 115,914 carloads, down 5.7%.

For the first 30 weeks of 2014, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 8,615,876 carloads, up 3.6% compared with the same point last year, and 7,658,277 intermodal units, up 5.9% from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 30 weeks of 2014 was 16,274,153 carloads and intermodal units, up 4.7% from last year.

Canadian railroads reported 82,266 carloads for the week, up 6.8%, and 61,032 intermodal units, up 12.6% compared with the same week in 2013. For the first 30 weeks of 2014, Canadian railroads reported cumulative volume of 2,359,192 carloads, up 1.2% from the same point last year, and 1,684,219 intermodal units, up 6.6% from last year.

Mexican railroads reported 17,141 carloads for the week, up 10.1% compared with the same week last year, and 11,481 intermodal units, up 6.6%. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 30 weeks of 2014 was 468,220 carloads, up 2.2% from the same point last year, and 303,006 intermodal units, up 3.5% from last year.

Combined North American rail volume for the first 30 weeks of 2014 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads totaled 11,443,288 carloads, up 3% compared with the same point last year, and 9,645,502 intermodal trailers and containers, up 5.9% compared with last year.