AAR: Intermodal Continues to Deliver

Written by Marybeth Luczak, Executive Editor
image description

For the week ending May 8, 2021, U.S. intermodal volume came in at 287,290 containers and trailers—climbing 26.3% from the same week last year and continuing a double-digit growth pace, reported the Association of American Railroads (AAR) on May 12.

Intermodal set a new “all-time record” in April, according to the AAR.

Total carloads for the week ending May 8, 2021 reached 236,019, a 27.6% increase over the prior-year period. Total U.S. weekly rail traffic was 523,309 carloads and intermodal units, up 26.9% compared with the same point in 2020.

For the week ending May 1, 2021, total U.S. rail traffic was 540,667, including 240,858 carloads (up 27.2% vs. 2020) and 299,809 containers and trailers (up 31.6% compared with last year).

For the week ending April 24, 2021, total U.S. rail traffic came in at 538,184, including 240,075 carloads (a 25% increase from 2020) and 298,109 intermodal units (a 34.3% boost from the same point last year).

All 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase for the week ending May 8, 2021, compared with the same week last year. They included coal, up 16,361 carloads, to 62,675; metallic ores and metals, up 9,925 carloads, to 23,543; and motor vehicles and parts, up 9,221 carloads, to 11,327.

For the first 18 weeks of this year, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 4,098,956 carloads, increasing 4% vs. the prior-year period; and 5,080,788 intermodal units, rising 18.1% from 2020. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 18 weeks of 2021 was 9,179,744 carloads and intermodal units, up 11.3% vs. last year.

North American rail volume for the week ending May 8, 2021, on 12 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 332,413 carloads, up 24% compared with the same week in 2020, and 380,465 intermodal units, up 22.6% from last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 712,878 carloads and intermodal units, up 23.2%. North American rail volume for the first 18 weeks of this year was 12,564,561 carloads and intermodal units, up 10.1% vs. the 2020 period.

Canadian railroads reported 75,952 carloads for the week, rising 12%, and 77,487 intermodal units, increasing 12.1% compared with the same week in 2020. For the first 18 weeks of 2021, they reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 2,727,941 carloads, containers and trailers, up 7.5%.

Mexican railroads reported 20,442 carloads for the week, a 33.8% increase from the same week in 2020, and 15,688 intermodal units, a 12.8% jump. Their cumulative volume for the first 18 weeks of the year was 656,876 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, up 5.2% from the same point in 2020.

Categories: Class I, Freight, Freight Forecasting, Intermodal, News, Short Lines & Regionals, Switching & Terminal Tags: , ,