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December employment up 3.44% from year ago
U.S. Class I railroads employed 159,717 workers in mid-December 2011, up 3.44% from a year earlier, though off 0.25% from November due to a seasonal drop in track maintenance employees.
Safety: A collaborative process
The FRA and the AAR’s Safety Appliance Task Force have joined forces to improve these safety-critical pieces of hardware. The FRA recently amended regulations related to safety appliance arrangements on…
Three more unions ratify freight railroad agreements
Members of three more unions have ratified new contracts with U.S. freight railroads, it was announced Tuesday.
RailComm upgrades BNSF Chicago yard
Fairport, N.Y.-based RailComm said Monday it has upgraded its existing yard system at BNSF Corwith’s mechanical facility in Chicago.
2012 RAILROADER OF THE YEAR: Dave Starling, making the right connections
When you talk with Kansas City Southern President and CEO David L. Starling about how KCS, the smallest Class I in mileage, has extended its reach and developed new frontiers,…
At Norfolk, NS breaks coal transload mark
Norfolk Southern said it has loaded the largest volume cargo in the history of its Pier 6 coal transloading facility at Lamberts Point in Norfolk, Va. Early on Jan. 12,…
The classification yard is arguably the most complex operation on a railroad. Despite the growth in unit trains, breaking up and reconfiguring trains—blocking and tackling—remains one of the basics of…
MBTA weighs rail service operating options
Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority has begun pondering its next contract for operations of its regional (“commuter”) services in the Bay State and neighboring Rhode Island, estimated to be worth $300…
2011 Outlook: Investing for growth
Strong earnings spur railroads to build capacity and productivity. If one word could define the thrust of railroad capital spending on improvements, it would be "growth"—growth in capacity, growth in…
Keeping things running smoothly
Railroads have long acknowledged the benefits offered by rail lubrication. But companies in the friction modifier market are continuing to make advances to help their railroad customers.
Strike threat to freight railroads recedes
With unions for more than half of the workers bargaining with North American freight railroads reaching agreements, the threat of a walkout affecting freight rail transportation is diminishing. Four more…
Automated asset management
Sophisticated data collection methods, along with high-tech systems to read and interpret the data, help railroads maximize their assets. Railroads are both asset-intensive and capital intensive. Knowing where and in what conditions…
For Volkswagen, versatility
Most, if not all, of the advances in motor vehicle transport by rail have come about through cooperative efforts involving the railroads, railroad suppliers, and manufacturers. Railroads transport about 70%…
CN’s productivity pipeline
Writing a new chapter in an extraordinary success story. Paul Tellier took Canadian National public with stunning success, Hunter Harrison’s Precision Railroading model took CN to performance levels that led…
Canadian Pacific charts a comeback course
Bigger is indeed better for this transcontinental carrier, which is operating some of the longest freight trains in North America. A railroad's stock performance isn't its only measure of excellence, but…
Will intermodal lead the recovery?
If the past few months are any indication, the answer is yes. Just ask BNSF. BNSF Railway posted a double-digit return on net investment for the 12 months ending June 30,…
The long and the short of distributed power
Canadian Pacific has harnessed the latest train control and planning technologies to drive forward its successful long-train program. The first half of 2009 was a tough time for Canadian Pacific…
Performance, productivity, profitability
Kansas City Southern looks to its new international intermodal corridor for sustained growth.Kansas City Southern is "the best growth story in rail." That proclamation, made recently by Dahlman Rose Director-Equity…
Keeping rolling stock rolling
How Union Pacific achieved a record 8.6-day car cycle time. For many years, freight car shortages plagued the railroad industry.
Railinc: Fleet remains young
Despite a higher average age, the revenue-earning fleet comprises mostly “young” freight car sub-fleets, based on a 50-year life span.
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