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11/19/2004



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

AAR update: U.S. roads just miss another weekly intermodal volume record, TFM continues to hit traffic-building target



It wasn't another record, but it was close. During the week ending Nov. 13, U.S. railroads moved 233,788 trailers and containers — the second-best weekly intermodal volume on record, according to the Association of American Railroads. The intermodal load total increased 11.7 percent compared with the same 2003 week.

U.S. roads also increased weekly carloads, but on a much smaller scale. The total of 346,089 carloads rose 0.9 percent compared with the same 2003 period.

During 2004's first 45 weeks, U.S. roads moved 15,180,403 carloads, up 2.9 percent, and 9,541,484 trailers and containers, up 9.7 percent compared with a similar 2003 period. Total estimated volume of 1.4 trillion ton-miles rose 5.1 percent.

Canadian railroads' traffic ledger for the week ending Nov. 13 showed opposite results: Carloads totaling 71,886 units increased 4.9 percent while intermodal loads totaling 43,420 units decreased 0.7 percent compared with the same 2003 week.

But their traffic remained on the uptick through 45 weeks. Carloads and intermodal loads totaling 3,029,812 units and 1,893,092 units, respectively, rose 7.4 percent and 0.2 percent compared with the same 2003 period.

On a combined cumulative-volume basis through 45 weeks, 15 reporting U.S. and Canadian roads moved 18,210,215 carloads, up 3.6 percent, and 11,434,576 trailers and containers, up 8 percent compared with last year.

In Mexico, TFM S.A. de C.V.'s traffic remains strong. During the week ending Nov. 13, the road increased carloads 12.5 percent to 9,104 units and intermodal loads, 27.8 percent to 4,419 units compared with the same 2003 week. Through 45 weeks, TFM moved 393,355 carloads, up 3.7 percent, and 169,800 trailers and containers, up 7.7 percent compared with last year.


Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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