U.S. Rail Traffic Still Waiting on Those “Sensible Actions”

Written by Andrew Corselli, Managing Editor
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The Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported U.S. rail traffic for the week ended Nov. 16, 2019, and, for this week, total U.S. weekly rail traffic was 501,249 carloads and intermodal units, down 8.4% compared with the same week last year. However, our neighbors to the north and south saw slight upticks.

U.S. freight traffic could still use some help—which has been the case for some time now—as total carloads for the week ended Nov. 16 were 239,647 carloads, down 8.9% compared with the same week in 2018, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 261,602 containers and trailers, down 7.9% compared to 2018.

One of the 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase compared with the same week in 2018. It was petroleum and petroleum products, up 1,357 carloads, to 13,977. Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2018 included commodities such as coal, down 13,610 carloads, to 72,611; metallic ores and metals, down 4,729 carloads, to 19,017; and nonmetallic minerals, down 3,069 carloads, to 30,184.

For the first 46 weeks of 2019, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 11,577,275 carloads, down 4.4% from the same point last year; and 12,249,836 intermodal units, down 4.6% from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 46 weeks of 2019 was 23,827,111 carloads and intermodal units, a decrease of 4.5% compared to last year.

North American rail volume for the week ended Nov. 16 on 12 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 342,686 carloads, down 7.6% compared with the same week last year, and 344,769 intermodal units, down 7.1% compared with last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 687,455 carloads and intermodal units, down 7.4%. North American rail volume for the first 46 weeks of 2019 was 32,539,973 carloads and intermodal units, down 3.4% compared with 2018.

Canadian railroads reported 82,975 carloads for the week, down 4.4%, and 65,188 intermodal units, down 6.8% compared with the same week in 2018. For the first 46 weeks of 2019, Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 6,972,827 carloads, containers and trailers, up 0.3%.

Mexican railroads reported 20,064 carloads for the week, down 5.6% compared with the same week last year, and 17,979 intermodal units, up 3.7%. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 46 weeks of 2019 was 1,740,035 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 2.7% from the same point last year.

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