U.S. freight carload traffic for the week ended April 18 plummeted 24.3% from the comparable week one year ago, the Association of American Railroads reported. Traffic declined 20.6% in the West and 28.6% in the East ,and fell in all 19 carload commodity groups charted by the AAR.
U.S. intermodal volume fell even more sharply, down 28.3%. Total volume of 27.2 billion ton-miles was down 23.2% from the comparable week in 2008.
Canadian freight carload traffic declined 25.2% for the week compared with one year ago, while intermodal fell less precipitously, down 17.0%. Mexico’s two major railroads saw freight carload traffic decline 9.8%, while intermodal dropped 21.9%.
Combined North American rail volume for the first 15 weeks of 2009 on U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads was down 18.1% from the first 15 weeks of 2008; intermodal was off 15.7% for the same comparable period.