In reporting U.S. rail traffic for the week ending Sept. 15, 2018, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) noted that nine of the 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase compared with the same week in 2017. Among them were petroleum and petroleum products, up 4,253 carloads to 13,335; chemicals, up 2,153 carloads to 32,650; and farm products excluding grain, and food, up 1,986 carloads to 16,583. Coal was the only commodity group that posted a decrease, down 3,457 carloads to 85,562.
News item: Ian Jefferies, 42, currently Senior vice President for Government Affairs at the Association of American Railroads (AAR), will succeed Ed Hamberger as President and CEO on Jan. 1, 2019. Most notably, Jefferies will serve as the railroad industry’s chief congressional lobbyist and spokesperson.
After what the Association of American Railroads (AAR) termed “an exhaustive executive search,” the organization has chosen one of its own—Senior Vice President Government Affairs Ian Jefferies—to succeed President and CEO Ed Hamberger.
The Association of American Railroads reported the latest weekly U.S. rail traffic continued to power ahead, driven by positive economic factors and looming fears over trade.
The leading U.S. rail policy organizations honored Rep. Jeff Denham for his “leadership backing the broad scope of industry issues in Congress.”
Freight rail traffic “continues to reflect the strength of the U.S. economy across all major industry sectors, with 15 of the 20 commodity categories we track having higher carloads in July 2018 than in July 2017,” said Association of American Railroads Senior Vice President of Policy and Economics John T. Gray noted as the AAR presented U.S. figures for the week ending July 28, 2018, as well as volumes for July 2018. “July saw especially strong gains in commodities related to the energy sector—and also in categories tied to consumer spending, including automotive and intermodal traffic. Still of concern, though, is the potential negative impacts that could result from the ongoing discussions around trade.”
The Association of American Railroads awarded third-party logistics provider Road & Rail Services Inc. an Automotive Quality Excellence Award at the AAR Damage Prevention and Freight Claims Conference in Nashville on July 10.
U.S. weekly intermodal volume rose 12% to 244,679 containers and trailers for the week ending July 7, 2018 compared with the same week last year, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported on July 11. Carloads for the week were 240,514, up 5.4% compared with the same week in 2017. Total U.S. weekly rail traffic rose 8.6% to 485,193 carloads and intermodal units.
In July 11, 2018 commentary published in the Washington Examiner, AAR President and CEO Ed Hamberger teamed with American Chemistry Council President and CEO Cal Dooley and American Petroleum Institute President and CEO Jack Gerard to point out the inherent folly of President Donald Trump’s planned imposition of tariffs on steel and aluminum, which would almost certainly cause a simmering trade war with vital economic partners to boil out of control, killing jobs and flushing U.S. economic security into the sewer.
The Association of American Railroads (AAR), in reporting U.S. rail traffic for the week ending June 30, 2018, as well as traffic for June 2018 and the year’s first half, noted that volume is keeping pace with a generally strong economy.