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Tuesday, January 04, 2011    Coal Traffic

UP closed out 2010 with PRB coal loading boost

In December, Union Pacific Railroad loaded 984 coal trains in the southern Powder River Basin (SPRB), up from 968 trains in November and 958 trains in December 2009. The Class I met 103 percent of National Coal Transportation Association (NCTA) demand, according to UP’s weekly coal loading performance report.

During December, the railroad logged 116 missed SPRB loading opportunities, 61 of which were attributable to slow unloading at utility plants, 37 to UP and 18 to mines. However, missed loadings were offset by 139 extra loadings, the report states. On Dec. 26, 59 loaded coal cars derailed near Chimney Rock, Neb., blocking both main tracks in the South Morrill subdivision, but the tracks returned to service the next day, according to UP.

In the Colorado/Utah region, the Class I loaded 220 coal trains, up from 189 trains in November, but down from 239 trains in December 2009. UP met 108 percent of NCTA demand, but sporadic mine production issues in the region continued to impact train loadings, the report states.

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